Czechs cruise in win
by Erin Brown|07 JUN 2022
Czechia outshot Germany 33-15 — 9-1 in the first period alone — on Tuesday.
photo: Micheline Veluvolu / HHOF-IIHF Images
Tereza Pistekova and Lucie Gruntova provided the sparks. Their Czechia teammates kept a hot offense going.

Pistekova had two goals and an assist and Gruntova scored twice as Czechia defeated Germany 6-2 on the second day of round-robin action at the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship.

"I feel good because I scored and we won," Pistekova said. "It was a good day for me and the team."

Ten players got on the scoresheet for the Czechs, while goaltender Michaela Hesova finished with 10 saves in the victory.

Despite the score, Czechia head coach Dusan Andraskovsky felt the victory was a "very hard game" but "good for our confidence. A lot of them are playing for the first time here."

The Czechs dominated puck possession in the first period, outshooting the Germans 9-1 before getting on the board with Tereza Plosova's tally 17:55 in.

After Adela Sapovalivova deked around the German defense, she sent a pass across the slot to Plosova at the right side of the net where the forward backhanded the puck past netminder Sara Brammen.

"We knew they move very well in the offensive zone," Germany head coach Franziska Busch said. "They have patience. It made us hard for us to block shots."

Gruntova extended Czechia's lead with goals 60 seconds apart early in the second period to make it 3-0. After a quick transition in the neutral zone, Gruntova carried the puck to the slot and fired it past Brammen's blocker at 3:37.

Moments later, the captain carried the puck up ice and, using a German defender as a screen, again beat Brammen blocker-side.

"I feel we played good," Gruntova said. "The atmosphere was fun. I'm very happy with (the goals)."

Leonie Willeitner scored for the Germans a little less than halfway through the period to pull them within two.

But the Czechs took advantage of a tired German squad in the third with three goals in the opening five minutes of the period.

Pistekova scored on the power-play 78 seconds in before Anna Vanickova made it 5-1 just 47 seconds later. Pistekova then extended the lead with her second tally of the contest at 4:50 on a wrist shot from the left edge of the crease.

With Czechia's output coming in short bursts, Andraskovsky said there is still work ahead for his squad.

"We have to improve our confidence and be in the game all game," he said. "That's the most important thing."

The Germans had just one shot on net through 15 minutes of the final period, but powered through to the final buzzer. Svenja Voigt scored on a breakaway with 1:44 left in regulation to make it 6-2.

"They fought for every goal," Busch said. "That's how we wanted to end the game, with offensive power and a goal. It was 6-2 and they (still) celebrated. They wanted the goal and they got the goal."

The Germans had a quick turnaround, playing again less than 24 hours after a 1-0 win over Switzerland on Monday. Busch noted her team was tired "physically and mentally."

"It was a short break from last night," she said. "Not a lot of time to regenerate."

Czechia rested Hesova for the final 11:20 of the contest. Backup netminder Barbora Dalecka allowed one goal on three shots down the stretch.

The victory puts Czechia atop Group B with one game to play. They will close out the opening round Thursday at 16:00 against Switzerland.

Germany faces Slovakia at 20:00. Busch is confident having time to rest will make a difference for her team on Thursday.

"We know what we can do and we know what we want," Busch said. "As I know the team, when they want something, they will get it."
Czechia vs Germany - 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women's World Championship