In the marquee matchup of the day, Team USA shut out Team Canada in front of a boisterous crowd of (mostly) American fans. The game was scoreless until late in the second period, thanks to an excellent performance by Shannon Szabados. Scoring was opened when Megan Bozek sent a pass through the crease after a beautiful wraparound play and Brianna Decker was all alone at the top of the crease to bury it.
Gigi Marvin added another goal for Team USA in the third, with a point shot that deflected off Marie-Philip Poulin and squeaked past Shannon Szabados.
Other than that goal, Szabados had a great comeback game—offensively, this one was all Team USA, who outshot Canada 30-18. Despite a lot of noise being made about the Americans not getting a full camp before the tournament, it was Canada who looked out of sync. Nicole Hensley played her second career game at the World Championships, and got her second shutout, although she didn’t have nearly the workload of her Canadian counterpart.
More highlights from the Canada - USA game available on the IIHF’s vimeo
2-1, Switzerland (SO)
Tereza Vanišová of the Czech Republic opened the scoring in the second period, on a shorthanded goal off a misplayed puck by Florence Schelling. The Swiss tied it up with under four minutes left on a power-play goal by Evelina Raselli. It was a game full of penalties, and it was finally a hooking call on Simona Studentová that the Swiss were able to capitalize upon and take the game to OT. It went to a shootout, and eighth shooter Christine Meier scored the only goal to win the game for Switzerland.
The upset of the tournament so far. Germany, currently ranked 8th in the world and one of two teams in the tournament who will miss the 2018 Olympics, defeated 5th ranked Sweden in regulation. All the goals in this one came in the second period. Nicola Eisenschmid opened the scoring for Germany on the first power play of the game. Lisa Johansson had the lone goal for Sweden, on a play described by Nicole Hasse as an own goal by defender Anna-Marie Fiegert. Manuela Anwander had the GWG and Andrea Lanzl finished off a play by Julia Zorn to get the insurance goal. A few examples of Sweden’s Sara Grahn’s work are embedded below, but it was German goalie Julia Harss who won the day, making 31 stops.
Russia came into this game down two veteran forwards as Anna Shokhina and Olga Sosina were both assessed 1 game suspensions following penalties in an exhibition match this week. Finland dominated play for the first two periods, outshooting Russia 14 to 7 and ended the second up 1-0 courtesy of Finnish hockey legend Riikka Välilä. Unfortunately for the Finns, play was much more even for the final period. Fanusa Kadirova tied it up just over 6 minutes into the third and Yekaterina Smolentseva put Russia over the top with a goal 50 seconds before the end of regulation time. There were issues with the net in one end seeming to come off its moorings rather easily and Nicole Haase reports that Finnish goalie Noora Räty felt it was a factor on the game winning goal.
All extended highlight videos from the IIHF on vimeo.
Another discovery was that Nicole Haase, who kindly allowed us to embed a few of her videos above, is tweeting from some of the games. For commentary, photos, videos and quotes, follow @NicoleHaase on Twitter.
12:00 pm Czech Republic vs Germany - the bottom two seeds coming into the tournament face off against each other. The Germans are coming off their first Top level IIHF tournament win since they beat Japan at Sochi on February 18, 2014, and they did it in a game in which only a total of 6 PIMs were handed out. The Czechs have been more than a little physical already this tournament, and after a second loss in a row to Switzerland they’re hungry for a win.
3:35 pm Russia vs USA - this is probably a bigger rivalry to the Russians than it is to the Americans. From what we saw yesterday, I think the only thing standing between the US and absolute domination is Russian goalie Nadezhda Alexandrova. (Live on NHL Network and NHL.com, TSN2)
6:00 pm Switzerland vs Sweden - Sweden has won the last two meetings between these teams at the World Championships, but Switzerland looks dangerous and Sweden could only manage one goal against Germany.
7:35 pm Canada vs Finland - for all that Canada didn’t look amazing against the US, they’re expected to win this one. They’re up against another hot goalie in Noora Räty, but the much-lamented regulation time scoring “slump” will probably snap before we hit the third period. (Live on TSN 1/3/5)
Whether you can only follow along via live stats, or you have access to every single game, chat about them in the comments!