IIHF Women's Worlds: Nurse Called Game to Advance Canada To Semis
It was another wild night at the CAA Arena in Brampton, Ontario as Canada beat Sweden 3-2 to reach the IIHF Women’s World Hockey Championship semifinal. This now puts the host country only two wins away from a third-straight championship.
A win is a win, but this one went the distance!
How It Went Down
Canada, who went a perfect 3-0 in Group A, drew Sweden. Entering the match, Sweden
Blayre Turnbull and Sarah Nurse scored for Canada while Lina Ljundblom and Hilda Svensson responded for the Swedes and the host once again massively outshot their opponents 54-12.
Canada opened the scoring just over 10 minutes into the first period when Turnbull with some great hands made some amazing moves and deked out both Swedish defenders before beating Soderberg five hole between her pads.
Nurse doubled Canada's lead in the second period seven minutes into the frame as she was able to beat Soderberg on the powerplay with a shot that went top shelf blocker side.
Six minutes later Sweden got on the board when MoDo forward and alternate captain Lina Ljundblom scored on the powerplay, beating Canadian starter Emerance Maschmeyer to make it 2-1.
It seemed like deja vu as Canada was hanging on late as they did in their previous game against the USA and unfortunately with 9.2 seconds left in regulation and Sweden pressing with the empty net Hilda Svensson scored to send the game to overtime
The savior for Team Sweden was the phenomenal play of their goaltender Emma Söderberg, who almost backstopped them to a massive upset. The Minnisota Duluth netminder was awarded the player of the game for Sweden and I have her tabbed as a finalist for Goaltender of the Tournament.
Just over five minutes into the extra period Nurse scored the game-winner and her second of the night with a powerful shot from the top of the circle that went through traffic as Söderberg was screened to send Canada to the semifinals.
Quarterfinals Recap & What's On Tap
In the earlier games, the USA beat Germany 3-0 to book their spot in the final four while Czechia for the second consecutive tournament made the semis after edging Finland 2-1.Connecticut Whale forward Kateřina Mrázová played hero for Czechia and helping to prove they are a bona fide Division I federation.
The 2023 IIHF Women's World Championship tournament will continue Saturday as the United States faces off against Czechia in the early game. The two sides faced off earlier in the tournament and the U.S. took a 6-2 win. Offensively, Czechia is a solid team. They will have to prove they can play a complete game defensively to have a chance against the United States.
As far as the U.S., it's truly an embarrasment of riches when the headline for a quarterfinals victory is your team was "held" to three goals. As contributor Angelica Rodruguez said earlier in the tournament, let's put some respect on the field.
Canada will face Switzerland in the second semifinal game Saturday. The Swiss team has had its ups and downs but is no stranger to competing in big games, historically. Do they have enough veteran experience and young talent to make a gold medal game? The draw is tough, especially given the depth of Hockey Canada in this tournament.