ZLIN, Czech Republic – Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team has won the gold medal at the 2012 IIHF U18 Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship, blanking the United States 3-0 on Saturday night at PSG Arena.
Alexis Crossley (Halifax, N.S./Shattuck-St. Mary’s, U.S. Prep) scored the game-winner off a rebound at 9:04 of the first period, Sarah Lefort (Ormstown, Que./Stanstead College, NAPHA) made it 2-0 on a power play five minutes later and Cydney Roesler (Stittsville, Ont./Ottawa, PWHL) capped it off for Canada at on another power play late in the third, while Emerance Maschmeyer (Bruderheim, Alta./Lloydminster, AJHL) made 28 saves for the shutout.
Earlier Saturday, Sweden defeated Germany 4-1 to take the bronze medal at the 2012 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship, which started Dec. 31 and ran through today in Prerov and Zlin, Czech Republic.
The last and only other time Canada won gold since the tournament’s inception five years ago was at the 2010 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship in Chicago, Ill., where the Canadians beat the United States 5-4 in overtime. Canada claimed silver in 2008 in Calgary, Alta., 2009 in Füssen, Germany, and 2011 in Stockholm, Sweden. The Canadians have faced their American rivals in all five gold medal games.
Canada’s Erin Ambrose (Keswick, Ont./Toronto, PWHL) was named Best Defenceman, as selected by the IIHF directorate, while Germany’s Franziska Albl was named Best Goaltender and Alex Carpenter of the U.S. was named Best Forward. The top three Canadian players, as selected by the IIHF directorate, were Ambrose, Cayley Mercer (Exeter, Ont./Bluewater, PWHL) and Roesler.
In preliminary round action, Canada defeated Switzerland 13-1 on Saturday, Germany 6-0 on Sunday and Finland 7-0 on Tuesday, earning a bye straight to semifinals, where Canada shut out Sweden 7-0 on Friday night.
“Each and every player and staff member on this team is truly golden,” said head coach Pierre Alain. “They have all represented Canada with class, both on and off the ice, and are truly deserving of this year’s world championship.”
The 22-player roster chosen to represent Canada at the 2012 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship includes two goaltenders, seven defencemen and 13 forwards, led by Alain (Mirabel, Que./St-Jérôme, Collégial AA), as well as assistant coaches Jim Fetter (Waterloo, Ont./St. Cloud State University, WCHA) and Carla MacLeod (Calgary, Alta./Mount Royal University, ACAC).
Six player returned to the team after claiming silver last year, including captain Ambrose, alternate captains Meghan Dufault (Winnipeg, Man./Balmoral Hall, JWHL), Roesler, along with Rebecca Kohler (St. Thomas, Ont./Bluewater, PWHL), Mercer and Laura Stacey (Kleinburg, Ont./Toronto, PWHL).
Kristyn Capizzano (Oakville, Ont./Mississauga, PWHL), Catherine Dubois (Quebec City, Que./Ontario Hockey Academy, U19), Abbey Frazer (Hudson, Que./John Abbott College, Collégial AA) and Sarah Lefort (Ormstown, Que./Stanstead College, NAPHA) made their debuts in a Team Canada jersey at this event.
Players and staff with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team will be flying home Sunday, Jan. 8. The following flight arrival information is subject to change:
Calgary, Alta., at 6:18 p.m. MT (AC125) – Erika Sowchuk
Edmonton, Alta., at 5:10 p.m. MT (AC127) – Emerance Maschmeyer
Kelowna, B.C., at 7:48 p.m. PT (AC8420) – Jordan Krause, Halli Krzyzaniak
Lethbridge, Alta., at 10:38 p.m. MT (AC7379) – Shannon MacAulay
Minneapolis, Minn., at 3:55 p.m. (AC7943) – Jim Fetter (assistant coach)
Minneapolis, Minn. At 10:44 p.m. WT (Delta 3899) – Alexis Crossley
Montreal, Que., at 4:13 p.m. ET (AC416) – Pierre Alain (head coach), Abbey Frazer, Sarah Lefort
Ottawa, Ont., at 4:10 p.m. ET (AC456) – Morgan Richardson, Cydney Roesler
Quebec City, Que., at 7:48 p.m. ET (AC8924) – Catherine Dubois
Saskatoon, Sask. at 6:57 p.m. CT (AC1125) – Emily Clark
Winnipeg, Man., at 5:44 p.m. CT (AC267) – Ashleigh Brykaliuk, Meghan Dufault, Taylor Woods
Players and staff not listed about are scheduled to land with the team in Toronto, Ont., at 7:40 a.m. ET and will be driving or returning over the coming days to their final destinations.
Follow Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at www.twitter.com/HC_TeamCanada, become a fan of Hockey Canada on Facebook for updates at www.facebook.com/HockeyCanada, and for more information, please visit www.HockeyCanada.ca.