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U.S. Tops Sweden, 2-1, in U18 Women's Worlds Opener

By, 01/06/18, 1:15PM EST


Webster nets game winner, U.S. outshoots Sweden 59-13

DMITROV, Russia - Makenna Webster (St. Louis, Mo.) netted the game-winner 2:47 into overtime as the U.S. Under-18 Women's National Team topped Sweden, 2-1, here tonight in its first game at the 2018 International Ice Hockey Federation Under-18 Women's World Championship.

“This was a great hockey game and I thought Sweden did a great job of keeping us to the perimeter," said Joel Johnson, head coach of the 2018 U.S. Under-18 Women's National Team. "We’re excited that we found a way to win and overcome some adversity. That will only help us get through two more tough games in the preliminary round.”

The U.S. controlled the play in the opening frame, outshooting Sweden 11-3, and broke through on a breakaway goal by Abbey Murphy (Evergreen Park, Ill.) with just 14 seconds left in the first period. The play started when Webster corralled the puck in the U.S. zone and threaded a pass between defenders up to Murphy, who slid the puck past Swedish goaltender Anna Amholt to open the scoring.

Team USA continued to generate scoring chances in the second stanza with 17 shots on goal, but was unable to double its advantage after 40 minutes. The best chance for the U.S. came just over the midway point of the frame when Taylor Heise (Lake City, Minn.) nearly connected with Maggie Flaherty (Lakeville, Minn.) on a two-on-one rush.

Sweden got on the board 6:36 into the final stanza when Lina Ljungblom scored the equalizer on the power play. The U.S. controlled the game in the Swedish zone for the remainder of the period, but could not convert sending the game to overtime.

Webster won the game with 2:47 left in the extra frame, putting home a one-timer from the slot off of a feed by Madeline Wethington (Edina, Minn.) from behind the net.

Lindsay Reed (New Vernon, N.J.) finished with 12 saves to earn the victory in net for Team USA.

The U.S. returns to action tomorrow (Jan. 7) against host Russia. Puck drop is slated for 7:30 a.m. ET and will be live streamed at

NOTES: Makenna Webster was named U.S. Player of the Game...  Team USA outshot Sweden, 59-13, finished 0-for-4 on the power play and 2-for-2 on the penalty kill. For full game statistics, click here… Reagan Carey (Colorado Springs, Colo.), USA Hockey’s director of women’s hockey, is the general manager of the 2018 U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team … Joining Johnson as an associate coach is Maura Crowell (Mansfield, Mass.), head women's ice hockey coach at the University of Minnesota Duluth, while Courtney Kennedy (Woburn, Mass.), associate head women's ice hockey coach at Boston College, is serving as an assistant coach … Team USA has played in the gold-medal game in all 10 of the previous IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championships, capturing the event’s top prize six times (2008, 2009, 2011, 2015, 2016, 2017). The U.S. holds an all-time record of 42-4-3-2 (W-OTW-OTL-L) in 51 games at the IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championship ... USA Hockey’s international council, chaired by Gavin Regan (Potsdam, N.Y.), vice president of USA Hockey, has oversight responsibilities for all U.S. teams that compete internationally.


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U.S. Schedule

Date Opponent Location Result U.S. Player of the Game
Sat., Jan. 6 Sweden
Preliminary Round
Ice Palace
Dmitrov, Russia
W (OT), 2-1 Makenna Webster
Sun., Jan. 7 Russia
Preliminary Round
Ice Palace
Dmitrov, Russia
W, 5-3 Britta Curl
Tues., Jan. 9 Canada
Preliminary Round
Ice Palace
Dmitrov, Russia
W, 6-2 Taylor Heise
Fri., Jan. 12 Canada
Ice Palace
Dmitrov, Russia
W (SO), 4-3 Casey O'Brien
Sat., Jan. 13 Sweden
Gold-Medal Game
Ice Palace
Dmitrov, Russia
W, 9-3 Dominique Petrie

2018 U18 Women's Worlds News