The first part became the most important for the development of the match. The more cautious start was balanced and both goalkeepers made several saves. At 7:20 a great action was started by Karolína Kosinová, who sent Noemi Neubauerová forward on the left side, she exchanged the puck with Adéla Šapovalivová, and the Czechs took the lead.
Michaela Pejzlová soon passed away in weakness. The most productive player of the Finnish league did not deceive the opponent’s goalkeeper with her loop. Anni Keisala was surprised by Denisa Křížová, who in a scrum in the circle decided to take a backhand shot and successfully hung it. Towards the end, in a 4 on 4 game, Tereza Vanišová won the puck behind the goal and charged Michael Pejzlové with a cross pass. The Finns went to the locker room empty, also because of Klářa Peslarová’s excellent catching.
The second period was more balanced. As time progressed, the Suomi players became more and more threatening. They broke the scoring streak in the 33rd minute. Pauliina Salonenová moved the ball to Eva Savanderová, whose unprepared shot bounced off one of the hockey sticks in the area in front of the goal and into the net.
The game continued to be a bit disjointed from both sides. No one managed to hold the offensive zone for a long time.
The final twenty minutes were accompanied by numerous eliminations. The Finns were able to use one such player in the beginning. Julia Liikala splashed around the left guard, stretched her opponents and then found the onrushing Jenniina Nylund, and the match was again just one goal away.
It was played actively on both sides and the Czechs had the upper hand mainly at the turn of the middle of the third. First, the puck flew into the post, then Anni Keisala had to extinguish the action with her mask. In the end, the northerners took a risk without a goalkeeper. They did not score a goal, on the contrary, Dominika Lásková’s high lob drove Adéla Šapovaliv into the net.
And how did coach Carla McLeodová see the game? “It was a great match. With Finland, it’s always very balanced, physical and they play actively on both sides. This has been confirmed even now. I think our team handled the key details of the game better. Rivals sometimes let the fight go too soon. And although they were aiming for the third goal, we, on the other hand, scored the fourth. I’m proud of the team’s performance,” said the Canadian coach after her first win at the tournament.
The next match awaits her charge on Friday against Denmark.
CZECH REPUBLIC – FINLAND 4:2 (3:0, 0:1, 1:1)
Goals and saves: 8. Neubauerová (Šapovalivová), 12. Křížová (Mrázová, Pejšová), 19. Pejzlová (Vanišová), 60. Šapovalivová (Lásková) – 33. Savanderová (Salonenová, Yrjöläová), 46. Nylundová (Liikalaová).
Czechia: Peslarová – Lásková, Pejšová, Čajanová, Tejralová, Jůzková, Seroiszková, Kosinová – Vanišová, Pejzlová, Křížová – Šapovalivová, Mrázová, Neubauerová – Pištěková, Přibylová, Plosová – Kalová, Pátková, Juříčková
Finland: Keisala – Karjalainen, Hiirikoski, Rantala, Savolainen, Savander, Yrjölä, Koukkula – Nieminen, Tulus, Vainikka – Liikala, Vanhanen, Salonen – Yrjänen, Nylund, Schalin – Täks, Seikkula, Montonen – Kaila