International Ice Hockey Federation

Holopainen strikes again

Holopainen strikes again

Finns book place in QF

Published 07.01.2018 23:10 GMT+4 | Author Andy Potts
Holopainen strikes again
DMITROV, RUSSIA - JANUARY 7: Finland's Elsa Holopainen #23 celebrates with Viivi Vanikka #26 after a first period goal against Switzerland during preliminary round action at the 2018 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women's World Championship. (Photo by Steve Kingsman/HHOF-IIHF Images)
Another starring performance from Elisa Holopainen puts Finland into the quarter-finals, while condemning the Swiss to a relegation playoff.

Elisa Holopainen repeated last night’s three-point haul to put Finland into the quarter-finals following victory over Switzerland.

The Finns’ 3-2 success takes the team to six points in Group B, with the Czechs on four and Germany on two. Switzerland, defeated in both games so far, is already destined for a relegation playoff.

With Finland capable of progressing to the QF in this game, the team made a bright start – and, sure enough, Holopainen was involved from the start. She opened the scoring in the second minute off a Viivi Vainikka assist for her second goal in this year’s tournament.

But Switzerland was about to unleash a scoring star of its own. Sinja Leeman, a 15-year-old from the Weinfelden Ladies club, celebrated her first ever World Championship goal when she got the vital touch on Lisa Ruedi’s shot from the point to cancel out that early Holopainen effort.

And clearly she enjoyed the experience so much she went all out to repeat it on a Swiss power play late in the second period to give her team a 2-1 lead and ignite its prospects of escaping relegation round action.

However, Holopainen had something to say about that. In the third period she had two more assists, taking her tournament points tally to six, as Julia Liikila tied the scores before Vainikka got the winner.

After Monday's rest day, the Group B program finishes with Germany taking on Switzerland. Any kind of German victory would require the Czech Republic to get a result against Finland if it is to make the quarter-finals.

 

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