BUDAPEST, Hungary - Six players scored goals and 10 players recorded at least one point as the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team rolled past Hungary, 7-0, in its second game of the 2014 International Ice Hockey Federation Under-18 Women's World Championship here today.
"We generated a lot of shots and offensive momentum throughout the game," said Jeff Kampersal, head coach of the 2014 U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team. "There are still some things we are working on and trying to get more consistent, but we're making good progress."
A strong first period in which Team USA out-shot Hungary, 22-3, helped the United States build a 3-0 lead by the first intermission. Taylar Cianfarano (Oswego, N.Y.) put the U.S. on the board early when she wheeled into the zone, beat a defender down the left side and fired a shot past Hungarian goaltender Aniko Nemeth at 1:25. Abby Roque (Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.) doubled the Team USA advantage at 14:50 when she grabbed the puck in the corner, skated to the slot and unleashed a low backhander past Nemeth and just inside the far post. Then, just 1:55 later, Rebecca Gilmore (Wayland, Mass.) corralled a pass in the slot and picked the top corner to make it 3-0 USA.
The Americans increased the lead to 5-0 after two periods on goals by Victoria Sullivan (West Bloomfield, Mich.) and Megan Keller (Farmington, Mich.). Sullivan scored at 11:47 when she grabbed a rebound at the edge of the crease and buried it just under Nemeth. Keller then made it 5-0 at 15:41 when she collected a cross-crease pass and tucked it into the open cage.
Cianfarano struck for her second goal of the contest at 17:31 of the final stanza before Taylor Williamson (Edina, Minn.) capped the scoring with three seconds remaining in the contest.
U.S. goaltender Kaitlin Burt (Lynn, Mass.) finished with five saves for the shutout.
The U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team (2-0-0-0) will conclude its preliminary-round schedule of the IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship with a tilt against Sweden on Wednesday (March 26). Puck-drop is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. ET.
Notes: Taylor Williamson was named U.S. Player of the Game ... Williamson led all U.S. players with three points (1-2=3) ... Taylar Cianfarano (2-0=2) and Lexie Laing (0-2=2) were the only other Team USA skaters to record multiple points ... Brooke Ahbe won nine of 10 draws to lead the U.S. in that category ... Maliya Rodgers tallied a game-high eight shots on net ... Megan Keller and Patricia Marshall both recorded a plus-three rating.
March 27, 2017 | When USA Hockey implemented its American Development Model in 2009, one element of the nationwide age-appropriate training blueprint sparked more debate than any other: cross-ice hockey for 8U players. In the years since, an abundance of evidence, both data-driven and anecdotal, has proven the developmental advantages of cross-ice hockey.
This week, Hockey Canada announced that it too will introduce its players to the game through cross-ice play beginning in 2017-18.
“Re-sizing the playing surface to cross-ice or half-ice means more puck touches, which result in more chances to practice puck control and shooting, as well as overall more movement and motor skill-development – twisting, turning, balance, coordination, agility,” said Paul Carson, vice-president of membership development for Hockey Canada, in a release today. “Their field-of-play matches their size, and these players hone in on their skill-development in a way that larger ice surfaces just aren’t conducive to.”
The Grassroots Show on Ottawa’s TSN 1200 weighed in on the decision. Click the audio link below to hear how Canada is embracing cross-ice hockey for the coming season and beyond.
Tom Renney, president and CEO of Hockey Canada, appeared on the Grassroots Show to discuss the nationwide shift to cross-ice hockey, beginning this fall for 5- and 6-year-olds and expanding to all of Canada's Novice (8U) level in 2018-19.
“When you see 10 or 12 or 14 or 16 kids out on the ice in between periods and they’re playing 200-by-85 and 3 or 4 kids touch the puck in that whole six minutes, yet there’s people in the stands clapping and thinking it’s wonderful, I just can’t help but think about the 95 percent of the children that didn’t even touch the puck or get from one end of the rink to the other and I ask myself what are we doing when the opportunity is certainly there to have 30 kids on the ice playing cross-ice and everyone is having a much better opportunity to touch the puck, skate a shorter distance and really play. It just boggles my mind,” said Renney.
“We completely embrace, at the Initiation level and the Novice level, cross-ice hockey and we have mandated that in the Initiation program and we will mandate it across the country in Novice hockey.
“This is about the pure enjoyment of the game, and your first connection with it has to be something that’s pure fun, on a surface of play that is conducive to much more participation and joy.”