🇨🇦 Canada 5-1 Czechia 🇨🇿
Women’s World Championship Preliminary Round
CAA Centre, Brampton 🇨🇦
Friday, 07 April 2023
Canada defeated Czechia 5-1 tonight in a rough-and-tumble game before a raucous crowd of 4,036 at CAA Centre. It was a solid win challenged by an impressive effort from coach Carla MacLeod’s Czechs.
Improbably, this was the first meeting between the two nations in World Women’s history. Canada moves to 2-0 with the win while the Czechs are now 0-1-0-1.
Blayre Turnbull had a goal and three assists while captain Marie-Philip Poulin had two goals, the 100th and 101st of her illustrious international career with Canada.
“They played us hard,” said Canadian defender Jocelyne Laroque. “They battled hard. They competed. I don’t think it’s bad that we go through a little adversity. In the second and third, we saw it as a challenge. We tried to focus on the details, winning our battles. I loved our third period. I thought was our best period so far.”
“Honestly, our game yesterday wasn’t as good as we thought we were going to be, so today’s game we went all in,” said defender Dominika Lásková. “I think we are just going to build off of it, what just happened today, and even though we lost it’s our first time playing Team Canada and with this score and being this group is just something cool for us. We’re just going to try to build off of it and just do better and better next game.”
Canada is right back at it tomorrow night against Japan while Czechia gets a day off before facing the United States on Easter Sunday.
Teams exchanged chances early, Kristin O’Neill making a fine rush short-handed but being denied by Blanka Škodová in the Czechia goal. On the same power play, Ann-Renée Desbiens made two great saves of her own, one a nice glove off a Kateřina Mrázová shot, and moments later from in close off Noemi Neubauerová.
Canada opened the scoring soon after off a fast rush up ice by Blayre Turnbull. She fed captain Marie-Philip Poulin, who took the pass, out-waited Škodová, and tucked the puck into the open side at 8:03. It was Poulin’s 100th international goal.
“When you have an odd-man situation with ‘Pou,’ you’re going to get her the puck,” Turnbull said. “I was pretty lucky to be a part of that milestone for her. She is the perfect example of someone who leads by example day in, day out, on ice and off. We’re so lucky to have her as our captain.”
To all appearances Canada had the game in hand and the puck on their sticks, but the Czechs did a masterful job of taking away the middle and preventing quality chances. And then the unexpected happened. Carrying the puck into the Canada end, Natálie Mlýnková ran out of room and options and fired a quick shot from the top of the faceoff circle. Desbiens was caught off guard, and the puck slipped between her pads. Mlýnková, in disbelief raised her gloves to her helmet.
The 1-1 game didn’t stay that way for long. Just 25 seconds later Canada restored its lead when Renata Fast’s long screen shot went all the way. It was only her third goal in 28 Women’s Worlds games since her debut in 2017, but a timely one all the same.
Buoyed by the first period, the Czechs came out and skated stride for stride, pass for pass, with Canada. They played without fear, giving Canada nothing and not getting much in the offensive zone either. It was an equal period even if Canada had a bit more of the puck and territory.
“I just tried to frame the moment the right way for them,” MacLeod said of her pre-game talk with her players. “It was a special night, not to be feared. The crowd, for instance. Take the time to look around. Look, we’re lucky–they wore red for us! When you compete at this level, this is why you train. At the end of the day, it was going to be a measuring stick, and that’s what we got out of this opportunity, a fairly positive result.”
The only goal came late, and it replicated Fast’s goal near the end of the first. This time it was a high wrister from Jocelyne Larocque that made its way through traffic and beat Škodová at 18:57 after a tip by Turnbull in front. But although it was a solid and well-deserved 3-1 Canada lead, the Czechs were right there every step of the way.
Poulin got her second of the night in highlight-reel fashion. She collected the puck at the Czechia blue line, waltzed around Lásková with seeming ease, and beat Škodová with a quick snap shot at 2:16 to give Canada a 4-1 lead and a bit of breathing room.
Laura Stacey added a fifth goal at 14:40 on another drifting shot from a distance that again had bodies in front of Škodová, clearly a tactic Canada was working on to create offence.
In the end, the better team won, but the Czechs earned the respect of their opponents and the admiration of the crowd. It was a special night, indeed.
05:44 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Turnbull, body checking
08:03 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Poulin (Turnbull, Jenner)
12:55 – 🇨🇿 PEN – Vanišová, body checking
18:27 – 🇨🇿 GOAL – Mlýnková
18:52 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Fast (Larocque, Turnbull)
22:11 – 🇨🇿 PEN – Neubauerová, holding
32:15 – 🇨🇿 PEN – Lásková, tripping
35:15 – 🇨🇿 PEN – Šapovalivová, high sticking
38:57 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Turnbull (Larocque, Clark)
39:37 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Serdachny, body checking
42:16 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Poulin (Jenner)
43:47 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Thompson, tripping
45:43 – 🇨🇦 PEN – O’Neill, holding
46:33 – 🇨🇦 PEN – Stacey, delay of game
49:01 – 🇨🇿 PEN – Mills, checking to the head
54:40 – 🇨🇦 GOAL – Stacey (Turnbull, Shelton)
56:55 – 🇨🇿 PEN – Vanišová, boarding
W: 🇨🇦 Desbiens (14-15)
L: 🇨🇿 Škodová (37-42)
SHOTS ON GOAL
🇨🇦 14+14+14 = 42
🇨🇿 7+4+4 = 15
🇨🇦 Goaltenders: Kristen Campbell, Ann-Renée Desbiens. Defence: Erin Ambrose, Jaime Bourbonnais, Renata Fast, Jocelyne Larocque (A), Ella Shelton, Claire Thompson, Micah Zandee-Hart. Forwards: Emily Clark, Sarah Fillier, Brianne Jenner, Rebecca Johnston, Emma Maltais, Sarah Nurse, Kristin O’Neill, Marie-Philip Poulin (C), Jamie Lee Rattray, Danielle Serdachny, Natalie Spooner, Laura Stacey, Blayre Turnbull (A).
🇨🇿 Goaltenders: Blanka Škodová, Kateřina Zechovská. Defence: Sára Čajanová, Klára Jandušíková, Karolína Kosinová, Dominika Lásková, Daniela Pejšová, Aneta Tejralová (A), Andrea Trnková. Forwards: Klára Hymlárová, Denisa Křížová (A), Alena Mills (C), Natálie Mlýnková, Kateřina Mrázová, Noemi Neubauerová, Kristýna Pátková, Michaela Pejzlová, Tereza Pištěková, Tereza Plosová, Vendula Přibylová, Adéla Šapovalivová, Tereza Vanišová.
|🇨🇦 CANADA (C)
(since 15 Dec 2022)
|First IHLC Meeting (CAN vs. CZE)
|Previous IHLC Meeting (CAN vs. CZE)
|Last IHLC Game
🇨🇦 CAN 4-0 SUI 🇨🇭 – 05 Apr 2023 – WWC – Brampton 🇨🇦
|Next IHLC Game
🇨🇦 CAN 5-0 JPN 🇯🇵 – 08 Apr 2023 – WWC – Brampton 🇨🇦
Article Credit: 2023 Women’s World Championship
Photo Credit: 2023 Women’s World Championship – IIHF – HHOF – IOC