Germany beats the buzzer
by Liz Montroy|30 AUG 2022
Germany's Katarina Jobst-Smith celebrates her team's first goal against Denmark.
photo: Andrea Cardin / HHOF-IIHF Images
Tanja Eisenschmid scored with 1 second remaining to give Germany a 3-2 win over Denmark in a wild end to Group B preliminary play. With this win Hungary stays in third place and will meet the Group A winner in the quarter-finals. Germany avoids relegation and finishes fourth in the group while Denmark will be relegated.
Denmark vs Germany - 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship
DEN GER 30 AUG 2022
The last time these teams played each other was in the Final Olympic Qualification tournament in November. Germany beat Denmark 3-2 in a shootout, but it was Denmark that ended up earning the berth to Beijing. 

Tuesday night’s game was a back-and-forth affair with a lot at stake and a thrilling last two minutes. The final Group B preliminary round match-up, this game would help determine the third and final Group B team to make it to the quarter-finals – as well as which team would be relegated, Germany or Denmark. 

Unable to qualify for the quarter-finals, this was the last game of the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship for Germany. The 2019 fourth-place finishers had a tough tournament, suffering regulation time losses to Hungary and Czechia and taking one point in a shootout loss to Sweden. But Denmark’s quarter-final hopes were still alive when the puck dropped. They just needed one point and end regulation time with a win or tie.

"I think that first game against Hungary we kind of broke down, and in my opinion I think we should have or could have won that game and we didn’t," said Tanja Eisenschmid. "So we tried to work with what happened that game and I think that kind of helped us move forward with the following games against Sweden and Denmark. We knew we had to really sit down and believe in ourselves."

Five minutes into the first period, an odd-player rush turned into an opening goal for Denmark. Four-time SDHL champion Josefine Persson slipped past Germany’s defence to score on Sandra Abstreiter, sending the fans in Iscenter Nord to their feet. 

Germany used their first power play opportunity to silence the loud Danish crowd with a tying goal from defender Franziska Feldmeier, her first of the tournament.

Denmark took another penalty in the second period, with Emma Russell going off for slashing, but the Danish penalty kill unit fended off Germany’s attack. Once back on the ice, Russell sent a pass from captain Josefine Jakobsen through traffic to put her team up 2-1.

Germany tried to generate a goal with some new line combinations. The Welcke twins were split up, Lilli playing with Laura Kluge and Sonja Weidenfelder and Luisa with Bernadette Karpf and Celina Haider. The Germans put 41 shots on net – only allowing one shot to get through to Abstreiter in the third period – but goaltender Cassandra Repstock-Romme kept her team in the game for as long as possible. 

Once again proving their ability to score in the final minutes, Germany tied the game with just over four minutes remaining. The German bench erupted as Laura Kluge jumped on a loose puck after a scramble in front of of Repstock-Romme.

Germany pulled their goalie with two minutes remaining to try to end the game in regulation – a must if they wanted to earn three points and finish ahead of Denmark. With all six German skaters crashing the net, a shot from defender Tanja Eisenschmid appeared to cross the line with just 1.0 seconds remaining. After a length video review, it was deemed a good goal, giving Germany a 3-2 win.

"It’s kind of surreal right now," said Eisenschmid. "We scored last second, I don’t think it can get any tighter. I’ve never played a game that tight. We’re really really happy, I can’t even find words. I think I’m going to have to let an hour or two pass before I realize what just happened." 

"We’re on top of the world right now," said Nina Jobst-Smith, Eisenschmid's defence partner. "Tanja played amazing. She shot two really great shots that brought us to the end there and honestly I can’t believe that that went in in the last second of the game. I don’t think I’ve ever been a part of a game like that, in all honesty." 

Germany’s win sends Hungary to the quarter-finals, where they will face the winner of the Canada-United States preliminary match-up, and relegates Denmark down to Division I Group A.
Denmark vs Germany - 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship