Team USA ran the table of Group A to clinch top spot in the elimination round of the 2016 World Championships, thrashing a hapless Russian squad 8-0 to retain the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
After being held to narrow 3-1 and 2-1 wins to open the tournament, Team USA unloaded on Russia, so quickly in fact they drove starting goalie Mariya Sorokina to the bench after two early goals on just four shots. First a Kendall Coyne breakaway, followed by Monique Lamoureux tally, and backup Nadezhda Morozova was already in goal. Morozova would not fare much better, however, as Megan Keller needed just eight more minutes to break her shutout, wiring in a wrister through traffic and in to put things at 3-0 after 20 minutes.
Despite outshooting Russia 10-5 in the second frame, The Big Red Machine managed to slow down the rapid U.S. offense to keep them scoreless in the second. The third, however, was a different story. Monique Lamoureux, in nearly replicating her earlier goal on Sorokina but this time on Morozova, broke the stalemate by drawing Morozova out of her cage, dancing around her and beating her low blocker side, put the game at 4-0, and opened the proverbial floodgates.
Shiann Darkangelo needed just 1:25 to notch her first tournament goal, a one-timer from Jocelyne Lamoureux, to make things 5-0. Hilary Knight added another notch to her goal belt with a screened shot wired past Morozova just three minutes later. And then, with a 5-on-3 power play, both Knight and Annie Pankowski put the final nails in the Russian coffin to put the final score at 8-0, to clinch Group A and disprove any critics who thought their game and offensive prowess had slowed down.
With the win, Team USA retains their 28th International Hockey Lineal Championship title, which they won at last year’s World Championship, and have now held for over one year and a dozen consecutive wins. This marks the first tilt between these two since last year’s semifinal, where the Americans routed Russia 13-1, following an earlier 9-2 victory. The Americans, with a bye to the Semifinals, now await the winner of the Russia-Finland Quarterfinal to see who their final opponent standing in their way for Gold, and the IHLC, will be.
05:07 – GOAL – Coyne (Pankowski)
06:29 – GOAL – M. Lamoureux (Darkangelo, Skarupa)
07:18 – PEN – Skiba, holding
12:15 – PEN – Kapustina, tripping
14:19 – GOAL – Keller (Skarupa, Carpenter)
39:15 – PEN – Trivigno, holding
39:46 – PEN – Pavlova, high sticking
43:49 – PEN – Belyakova, interference
44:54 – GOAL – M. Lamoureux (Decker)
46:19 – GOAL – Darkangelo (J. Lamoureux)
49:10 – GOAL – Knight (Coyne)
50:09 – PEN – Morozova, tripping
51:19 – PEN – team, too many players
54:38 – PEN – Shibanova, kneeing
55:40 – PEN – Shukina, tripping
56:17 – PP2 GOAL – Knight (Coyne, Decker)
57:14 – PP GOAL – Pankowski (J. Lamoureux)
W: Hensley (16-16)
L: Sorokina (2-4), Morozova (29-35)
SHOTS ON GOAL
14+10+15 = 39
6+5+5 = 16
Goaltenders: Nicole Hensley, Jessie Vetter. Defence: Kacey Bellamy (A), Megan Keller, Monique Lamoureux (A), Emily Pfalzer, Michelle Picard, Lee Stecklein. Forwards: Alex Carpenter, Kendall Coyne, Shiann Darkangelo, Brianna Decker, Meghan Duggan (C), Zoe Hickel, Hilary Knight, Jocelyne Lamoureux, Annie Pankowski, Amanda Pelkey, Haley Skarupa, Dana Trivigno.
Goaltenders: Nadezhda Morozova, Mariya Sorokina. Defence: Angelina Goncharenko, Alexandra Kapustina, Yekaterina Nikolaeva, Nina Pirogova, Anna Shibanova, Anna Shukina (C). Forwards: Lyudmila Belyakova, Tatyana Burina, Yelena Dergachyova, Iya Gavrilova (A), Fanuza Kadirova, Elina Mitrofanova, Valeriya Pavlova, Alevtina Shtaryova, Yelena Silina, Galina Skiba, Yekaterina Smolentsova (A), Yekaterina Smolina, Olga Sosina, Alexandra Vafina.