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Watch the USA take on Canada tonight in the gold medal game of the 2016 IIHF Women's World Championships

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United States looks to stay perfect. Canada seeks revenge.

The Basics:

  • What: The 2016 IIHF Women's World Championship Bronze Medal and Gold Medal Matches
  • Where: Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada
  • Who: USA Hockey and seven other teams (see below)
  • When: Today, 6:30 PM and Gold Medal Game is at 10:30 PM
  • How to watch: Both games will be aired Live on the NHL Network
  • How to follow without watching: All games will be updated on the IIHF website. There is also an app available for iOS and Android (called 2016 IIHF) that does live score updates and push notifications.

Gold Medal Game

United States

After a thrilling game against Canada to start the tournament, which resulted in a win, the United States rolled on and now plays again for a gold medal.

Their second game was against a tough Finland team that always plays the Americans well. The Fins actually held an early 1-0 lead before Boston Pride star Hilary Knight equalized it and Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson gave the US the win.

After that win it was on to Russia, and they haven’t looked back since. The US had Russia in their final group game and drew them for their next game in the semifinals. They won these games by a cumulative 17-0. In game one Northeastern phenom and Pride first round Draft pick Kendall Coyne opened the game with a goal at about five minutes in that would hold up as the game winner. This game really highlighted the Boston Pride’s probable top line next season as Coyne, Knight and NWHL MVP Brianna Decker combined for seven points, three of them goals. The second game was more of the same, with the US jumping out to a quick 5-0 lead after the first period and then they took their feet off the gas, ‘only’ scoring four more goals.

Canada

The second game for Canada was Russia. The Russians actually held a lead after one but after that it was all Canada, notching six unanswered goals in the second period en route to a 8-1 victory. The Maple Leafs then held off the Fins in the final group stage game before getting all they could handle against them in the semifinals.

Prediction

Whenever USA and Canada play each other, the game could go either way. In the early years it was almost all Canada in the World Championships. Recent times have heavily favored the US in this competition. Historically Canada has been dominant on home ice until the United States took this tournament in 2013 in Ottawa to become the first team to ever beat the Canadians on home soil, men or women.

This tournament has made the American offense look like Juggernaut and their defense has been stalwart. They've allowed a mere two goals, none in the last seven periods of play.

The Canadians have had some amazing goalie play out of Harvard graduate and Pride draft pick, Emerence Maschmeyer. Maschmeyer kept the Canadians in the opening game despite a rash of penalties; she has allowed no goals since that game.

If Canada can’t stay out of the box they will not be able to win and even if they do the US seems to be clicking on all cylinders. Prediction: US Wins 3-1

Finland’s Typical Finish

After an as expected group stage, they followed chalk and are once again in the Bronze Medal match. In group play they beat Russia handily to open the tournament, their bronze medal opponent. They played the US close like they always do before falling 2-1. They then fell to Canada as expected. In quarterfinal play they drew the upstart Czech Republic but were able out last them. In the semifinals they got a rematch with Canada, which they again held the lead but the onslaught of Canada’s offense was too much. The Finish coach repeatedly pulled the goalie in the third period on power plays, much to the consternation of the TSN broadcasting team, that brought them back into contention but eventually Canada was able pull away with an empty netter. They look to add their 12th Bronze medal tonight over Russia.

Cinderella Czechs

After a tough outing in 2013, their only previous appearance in the top division, which resulted in their relegation back to the next tier little was expected of them coming into this tournament. Unlike in 2013 they were unable to beat Sweden in their opening game, allowing the game winner with a mere eight seconds remaining in the game. What would come next was the biggest shocker of the tournament, a 3-1 win over Switzerland. The win put them in the enviable position of being able to guarantee their place in the quarterfinals with a regulation win against Japan in their final group stage game. They were unable to hold the late lead but then took the game in a shootout.

Their medal dreams ended in the quarterfinals when they were matched up against Finland. They held their own for the first 30 minutes before the Fins found their groove and tallied three goals before the end of the second frame. They would add two more to finish the game at 5-0.

The Czechs would get another crack at the Swedes, the team that relegated them in 2013, in the 5th place game. They took an early 2-0 lead and would hold onto it until the last 10 minutes of the game. At that point they allowed three goals in 125 seconds. They would allow a short-handed empty net goal to finalize the score at 4-2.

Northeastern’s Denisa Krisova ended up tied for the team lead in points with five assists, including assists on both of the Czech Republic’s goals in the 5th place game.

Swooning Swiss

Before the tournament, we said the Swiss would go as far as Schelling could carry them. She needed more help. After starting the tournament off with a 4-2 victory over Japan the wheels seemed to fall off a bit.

In the shocking loss to the Czechs, Schelling only had a save percentage of .824, well below her usual level. They let up a PP goal early in the second and were never able to recover.

Despite the head scratching loss the Swiss still controlled their destiny against Sweden in the final game of group play, needing only a regulation win to advance after the Czechs were taken to a shootout by Japan. They in fact had an early lead just under four and a half minutes in. They would then get bitten by the Swedes proclivity of scoring late in the period as the game was knotted at 1-1 with 26 seconds remaining in the second period. Despite pulling Schelling with 71 seconds remaining they were unable to get the winning goal and were sent to relegation. They lost the shootout 1-0.

In the relegation round they drew the same Japan team they opened the tournament with a win. They took the first game 3-1. Schelling would then notch her only shutout of the tournament solidifying the Swiss’ place in the next addition of World’s winning 4-0. She would end up with a save percentage of .932 allowing eight goals over the tournament, four of which were PP goals. Schelling was one of only three goalies to play all of her teams minutes in the tournament.