(Courtesy of Hockey Canada)
Canada 6 – Sweden 1 (Final)
CANADA TO PLAY FOR GOLD AFTER SEMIFINAL WIN OVER SWEDES
FÜSSEN, GERMANY – For the second year in a row, Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team will play for gold at the IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship.
Melodie Daoust (Valleyfield, QC/Sélects, Midget AA) had a hat trick and added an assist as Canada recovered from an unfamiliar position – trailing – to score a 6-1 win over Sweden in Friday’s semifinal. The Canadians scored six unanswered goals in the second and third periods to pick up the victory.
Saturday’s gold medal game (11:30 a.m. EST) will match Canada against the winner of Friday’s late semi between the United States and the Czech Republic.
Canada started fast against the Swedes, outshooting them 10-3 in the opening period, but could not get a puck past Josephin Lennstrom – the first period in the tournament the Canadians did not score a goal.
Early in the second it was Sweden who got on the board first, as Erika Grahm converted with the European side enjoying a power play. It was just the second goal allowed by Canada at the tournament, and the first by netminder Cassie Seguin (Ingleside, ON/Ottawa, PWHL).
However, the Canadians would need just 73 seconds to reply – Laurie Kingsbury (Valleyfield, QC/Sélects, Midget AA) took a pass in front of the net from Saige Pacholok (Edmonton, AB/Edmonton, WWHL) and snapped a shot past Lennstrom, opening the floodgates for the Canadian offence.
Daoust struck twice before the end of the second period, including a beautiful setup from Jessica Wong (Baddeck, NS/Stoney Creek, PWHL) on her second goal, to send Canada to the second intermission with a two-goal lead.
Sweden came out gunning in the third period, outshooting Canada 14-9 in the frame, but could not beat Seguin to cut into the Canadian lead.
Jamie Lee Rattray (Kanata, ON/Ottawa, PWHL) pushed the lead to three early in the final frame, weaving through the Swedish defence to score her fifth goal of the tournament, tying for the team lead, and Daoust completed her hat trick just minutes later.
Brittany Phillips (Lauder, MB/Westman, Midget AA) rounded out the scoring with six minutes to go.
Pacholok finished with two assists to give her seven points in four games, taking over spot in scoring among defencemen at the tournament.