The World Women’s U18 round robin came to a close last night as Canada the U.S. remained unbeaten and won their respective groups. Sweden and the Czech Republic also qualified for the semi-finals after skating to second place in the preliminary round.
By far the biggest surprise of the tournament is the presence of the Czech women in semi-finals. Traditionally, it is Finland which occupies the fourth spot in the women’s game, but with the Finns going winless in the preliminary round, the Czechs saw their opportunity and pounced. The race for the semi-final spot in Group A was tight as it came down to last night’s Czech Republic - Germany game, which the Czechs won, 3-2, on the strength of two, third-period goals.
The berth in the semi-finals for the Czechs is particularly impressive considering the nation does not play in the top level at the World Women's championship.
The loss sent Germany, along with winless Finland, into the consolation round from Group A. Finland was hammered last night by host Canada, 17-0. It was the most lopsided score yet of the championship.
Going into the consolation round from the B Group are Switzerland and Russia. The two consolation round teams played last night, with Switzerland winning, 6-2. But Sweden and the U.S. had already secured their semi-final places, so the result did nothing to propel either team into the medal round.
Below are the semi-final round match-ups along with complete game recaps from Hockey Canada.
Semi-Final #1: United States – Czech Republic
Semi-Final #2: Canada – Sweden
Russia – Switzerland: 2-6
United States – Sweden: 6-2
Czech Republic – Germany: 3-2
Canada – Finland: 17-0