Tornado Moscow Region will be back to defend its title in the European Women’s Champions Cup, once again sweeping their opponents in Group F to advance to the final tournament. The team will be joined in the final by Kärpät Oulu (Finland), MODO Örnsköldsvik (Sweden), and ZSC Lions Zurich (Switzerland).
Looking at the different teams, the EWCC final on 22-24 February could be one of the closer finals in memory. Tornado Moscow won last year thanks in large part to a tight 2-1 victory over Zurich in the final round, and the Lions will be looking for payback. Among the tournament newcomers, MODO has been tearing through the opposition and is arguably the hottest team heading into the final.
Group E recap
It has been a fantastic year for MODO Örnsköldsvik, having won its first ever Swedish women's championship and now poised to challenge for the 2013 EWCC championship. Through the first two rounds the team has compiled a 6-0 record, scoring 41 goals and allowing only five in that span.
The Group E tournament began with more of the same, as MODO opened with a 10-0 win over Bolzano. But the biggest test of the tournament for the ladies from Sweden came in their second game against 2012 EWCC runners-up ZSC Lions Zurich. Down 2-1 to the Lions heading into the final period, MODO’s Sandra Hallden and Emma Nordin came up big with a goal apiece to win 3-2.
MODO followed up with an 8-3 trouncing of ESC Planegg, sowing up the top spot in Group E. Both MODO and Zurich advanced, guaranteeing another meeting between the two teams in the EWCC final tournament.
Group F recap
For Tornado Moscow Region the 2013 EWCC tournament has been business as usual. Russia’s top women’s club team went undefeated in games against Kärpät Oulu, Aisulu Almaty, and Slavia Prague to make it to the final stage for the second year in a row.
Tornado kicked off the tournament in Oulu, Finland with a 6-1 win over Aisulu, then defeated the hosts 4-1 and demolishing Slavia Prague 7-2.
The Russian team goes into the final round with a strong goaltending contingent of Anna Prugova and Slovak national team netminder Zuzana Tomcikova. Top forwards like Elin Holmlov and Tatiana Burina have been supported by their teammates in the scoring department, as several player found the back of the net in the Group F tournament.
Host Kärpät Oulu managed to snag second place and a trip to the final with a 3-0 win over Slavia Prague followed by a 4-3 victory against Aisulu Almaty in the final game. Captain Anne Helin scored the game winner to put her team through to the EWCC championship final.
The EWCC final will run from 22-24 February 2013, with a host to be determined.