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Swiss Women's National Team

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One month before the Olympic Qualification in Arosa, the Swiss national team is on the right track. Thanks to two wins at the Nations-Cup in Telfs (despite two losses), the team finished in fifth place.

Photo: SIHF

The 3-8 loss to Russia in a kinky opening game, however, does not tarnish the overall performance of the team, which, once again, could not play at full strength. In addition to Florence Schelling (spared), Laura Benz and Isabel Waidacher were ill and could not play in Telfs; thus, head coach Daniela Diaz had to change her lineup.

Despite having more scoring chances, the Swiss were surprised by the efficiency of the Russian team in the opening game. With the 8-2 victory over Austria, the only Division I team of the tournament, the team then fixed its bad start. In the game against the eventual champion Finland, the Swiss team was at eye level with the opponent. Just 52 second before the end, the Fins scored the game-winning goal. The 5-1 victory over Sweden in the game for fifth place was the icing on the cake of this tournament.

Almost 80 percent of the goals were scored by Alina Müller (8) and Lara Stalder (6), who played together with Sandra Thalmann and Nina Waidacher respectively. The trio with center Evelina Raselli only scored two goals, the “stopgap trio” with Dominique Rüegg only one. This can go wrong if the opponent does find the right way to neutralize the two top scorers. However, neither the Russian (three goals by Lara Stalder), nor the Finnish, nor the Swedish team managed to do that. However, the Swiss women’s national team has to improve several things, too: Overall, they received five goals during the power play and three shorthanded goals! And they only scored three goals during a power play and two shorthanded goals in the whole tournament.

National team head coach Daniela Diaz, who was mainly impressed by the "spectacular improvement from game to game," remains confident. “It was mind-blowing that we were able to play such a good game after this devastating loss against Finland. The team grew even closer together; we developed in the right way.” Diaz is going to visit the U18 Women’s World Championship in the upcoming days to have a closer look at some possible candidates from the youth team. In mid-January, she will have to choose the 18 skaters and three goaltenders for the tournament in Arosa. “We still have to analyze several things,” she adds. However, it is safe to assume that those players who shaped the national team in the past few years will also participate in the Olympic Qualification.

Last Update: 10 January 2017, 07:03 AM | bsc

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