Team USA Gophers Set for Olympic Semifinal

Go Gophers! Noora Raty
Go Gophers!
Noora Raty
Go Gophers!

Feb. 15, 2014

Schedule/Results | Photo Gallery

MINNEAPOLIS – The 2014 Winter Olympics are in full swing, and the women's ice hockey competition is already heading into the medal round. With seven current and former Golden Gophers skating for Team USA and Finland, Minnesota is well-represented.

Following Saturday's quarterfinal round, Monday's semifinal match-ups are set. Team USA will take on Sweden at 6:30 a.m. CT, and top-seeded Canada will face Switzerland at 11 a.m. CT. Five current and former Gophers are still in contention for an Olympic medal in Team USA Gophers Megan Bozek, Amanda Kessel, Gigi Marvin, Anne Schleper and Lee Stecklein.

With a 4-2 quarterfinal loss to Sweden, Noora Raty, Mira Jalosuo and Finland have been moved to the classification round and will take on Germany at 2 a.m. CT Sunday morning.

GopherSports.com takes a look back at how the teams got to the semifinal round, including a special look at the contributions from the U.S. and Finnish Gophers in the opening round games.

Women’s Preliminary Round: Group A

Feb. 8: USA 3, Finland 1
Seven Gophers took the ice in the opening game of the women's hockey tournament as Team USA topped Finland, 3-1. Finland received a strong performance from Raty as she logged 40 saves and kept the game close. For Team USA, Bozek and Schleper each picked up one assist, while Marvin recorded six shots on goal and Kessel added five.

Feb. 8: Canada 5, Switzerland 0
Canada recorded 69 shots on goal to cruise to its first victory of the Olympic Games. Canada got on the board at the 1:25 mark of the first period and never looked back.

Feb. 10: USA 9, Switzerland 0
Team USA controlled the game from start to finish as they skated to a 9-0 victory over Switzerland. Kessel led the way with four points on two goals and two assists. Her two goals came on three shots on goal. Stecklein and Bozek each picked up an assist as well. Team USA scored five goals in the first period, with Kessel contributing two in a 5:27 span. Kessel’s second goal came on the power play, and Team USA added four more tallies throughout the next two periods to pick up their second win of the Olympics.

Feb. 10: Canada 3, Finland 0
Raty added another 39 saves to her Olympic resume, but her offense was shut out and Finland fell to Canada, 3-0. Raty held the Canadians scoreless for almost 50 minutes until a power play goal gave Canada the lead 1:33 into the third period. Canada managed to get two more shots by Raty before the game was over for the 3-0 win.

Feb. 12: Finland 4, Switzerland 3
Ray, Jalosuo and Finland posted a 4-3 overtime victory over Switzerland in their third game of the Olympics. Raty made 24 saves, and Jalosuo picked up an assist on Finland's first goal of the game.

Feb. 12: Canada 3, USA 2
Team USA fell to Canada, 3-2, to wrap up its preliminary round play. Hilary Knight gave the U.S. a 1-0 lead before Canada scored three-straight goals. Schleper cut Canada's lead to one late in the game, but Team USA could not find the equalizer. Schleper led Team USA with two points on one goal and one assist.

Women’s Preliminary Round: Group B

Feb. 9: Sweden 1, Japan 0

Feb. 9: Russia 4, Germany 1

Feb. 11: Sweden 4, Germany 0

Feb. 11: Russia 2, Japan 1

Feb. 13: Germany 4, Japan 0

Feb. 13: Russia 3, Sweden 1

Women's Quarterfinal Round

As the top two seeds from Group A following the preliminary round play, Canada and Team USA earned byes through the quarterfinal round and on to the semifinals. Switzerland and Finland faced the top two teams from Group B, Sweden and Russia, in the quarterfinals to battle for the last two places in the semifinal round.

Feb. 15: Sweden 4, Finland 2
Finland's medal hopes were dashed with a 4-2 quarterfinal loss to Sweden. Raty made 28 saves, and Jalosuo saw 25:14 of ice time. Finland took a 1-0 lead into the third period before Sweden battled back to take a 2-1 lead. Finland tied the game at 2-2, but Sweden scored two goals in the final 4:15, including an empty-net goal, to win and advance to a meeting with the U.S. in the semifinals.

Feb. 15: Switzerland 2, Russia 0

Women's Classification Schedule

Feb. 16: Finland vs. Germany, 2 a.m. CT

Feb. 16: Russia vs. Japan, 11 a.m. CT

Women's Semifinal Schedule

Feb. 17: Team USA vs. Sweden, 6:30 a.m. CT

Feb. 17: Canada vs. Switzerland, 11 a.m. CT

The four semifinalists will take to the ice for the gold and bronze medal games on Thursday, Feb. 20. The winners will meet at 11 a.m. CT, following the bronze medal game at 6:30 a.m. CT. The classification round concludes on Tuesday, Feb. 18 at 2 a.m. CT and 6:30 a.m. CT.

###