ST. CATHARINES, Ont. — Alex Woken (Fargo, N.D./Shattuck St. Mary’s) and Rebecca Gilmore (Wayland, Mass./East Coast Wizards) each scored twice and Alex Gulstene (Evanston, Ill./Okanagan Hockey Academy) backstopped the U.S. with a shutout performance as the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team defeated Russia, 6-0, in a preliminary round matchup at the International Ice Hockey Federation Under-18 Women’s World Championship.
“We upped our game another notch today and played a more disciplined game,” said Joel Johnson, head coach of the 2016 U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team. “I’m pleased with our progress and we’ll turn our focus to Canada for our next game.”
Russia almost opened the scoring in the first minutes of the game, but a collision with Gulstene and a dislodged net caused the officials to wave off the goal.
Neither team was able to find the back of the net in the opening period, despite the U.S. outshooting Russia, 12-4.
Natalie Snodgrass (Eagan, Minn./Eastview High School) put the U.S. on the board at 4:49 of the second period when she buried a rebound at the right post following a blocked shot. At 10:18, Woken battled in front of Russia’s net before getting her stick on a loose puck and poking it into the net to double Team USA’s lead.
With less than five minutes to play in the period, Taylor Wente (Plymouth, Minn./Maple Grove High School) forced a turnover deep in Russia’s zone and rushed the net with the puck. Gilmore was there to put home the rebound off the initial shot.
Just 1:04 later, Presley Norby (Shorewood, Minn./Minnetonka High School) rocketed a shot off the post that rebounded to Sydney Brodt (North Oaks, Minn./Mounds View High School), who gave the U.S. a 4-0 cushion heading into the final frame.
Within a :44 span early in the third period, Woken and Gilmore each netted their second goals of the game to make the score 6-0.
Team USA will play its third and final preliminary round game against Canada at 7:30 p.m. ET Monday (Jan. 11).
NOTES: Alex Woken was named the U.S. Player of the Game ... The U.S. is 2-0-0-0 (W-OTW-OTL-L) at this year’s IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championship … Team USA outshot Russia, 46-11. For complete game statistics, click here … Team USA has outscored its opponents, 12-0, at this year’s tournament … The U.S. is defending its gold-medal finish at last year’s IIHF Women’s Under-18 World Championship. The U.S. has played in the gold medal game in all eight of the previous events, capturing the event’s top prize four times (2008, 2009, 2011, 2015) … Team USA is competing in Group A with Canada, Czech Republic and Russia … Live streaming of the tournament is provided by FASTHockey.com… For more information on the 2016 U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team, including a full roster, click here.
|DATE||OPPONENT||RESULT||U.S. PLAYER OF THE GAME|
|Fri., Jan. 8||Czech Republic||W, 6-0||Grace Zumwinkle|
|Sat., Jan. 9||Russia||W, 6-0||Alex Woken|
|Mon., Jan. 11||Canada||W, 4-1||Rebecca Gilmore|
|Thurs., Jan. 14||Sweden (Semifinal)||W, 4-0||Natalie Heising|
|Fri., Jan. 15||Canada (Gold Medal Game)||W, 3-2 OT||Natalie Snodgrass|