After a quick breakfast at the team hotel this morning, Team USA loaded their luggage onto the bus and headed to Los Angeles International Airport to depart for Japan.
The U.S. squad will take a 12 and a half hour flight to Tokyo before hopping on another hour and a half flight to northern Japan. This year's Under-18 Women's World Championship will be held in Obihiro, Japan, which is on the northern-most island in Japan, Hokkaido.
Team USA will hold multiple practices at Obihiro Forest Arena in preparation for their tournament opening game against Russia on January 6.
On Tuesday evening, head coach Maura Crowell announced that Dominique Petrie (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) will serve as team captain for Team USA while Katy Knoll (Amherst, N.Y.) will serve as the team’s lone alternate captain.
“Being named captain and having the opportunity to lead our country is the greatest honor anyone can have,” Petrie said. “I am incredibly honored and grateful to be able to do this. This is a really special group we have and I’m super excited to get things going in Japan.”
Petrie, who is playing in her third consecutive Under-18 Women’s World Championship also served as captain of the 2018 Under-18 Women's Select Team at the Under-18 Series vs. Canada.
Katy Knoll is playing in her second consecutive Under-18 Women’s World Championship after scoring two goals in in Team USA's gold-medal victory over Sweden at the 2018 IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship.
“Being named alternate captain of this team is a great honor and to have the opportunity to travel overseas with this group will be an incredible experience,” Knoll said. “I am excited to be able to help lead our team and can’t wait for the tournament to begin.”