by Michel Belanger
December 16, 2013, TRENTINO, Italy (ISN) – Canada received solid performances in women’s hockey, snowboarding and curling on the seventh day of competition at the Winter Universiade, on Monday.
In women’s hockey, the team of CIS all-stars dominated Japan 9-1 to complete the round-robin portion of the tournament in first place with an unblemished 5-0 record.
In Wednesday’s second semifinal at 2 p.m. EST (8 p.m. Trentino), the Canadians will face the United States (3-2), an opponent they defeated 9-1 on Sunday and 8-1 in the semis of the 2011 tourney in Turkey. The early semifinal will see Russia (3-2) face off against Japan (3-2) at 10 a.m. EST.
Against the Japanese, Canada jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first frame and was up 3-0 after 40 minutes, before exploding for six goals in the final stanza. The reigning two-time FISU champions held a decisive advantage in shots on goals in each period, including 17-3 in the first, 16-2 in the second and 19-4 in the third.
Amanda Parkins, a University of Guelph forward from Kitchener, Ont., paced the offence with a hat-trick, while McGill’s Gabrielle Davidson tallied a goal and two assists to bring her Universiade-leading points total to 18 (10-8-18).
“That was by far our toughest opponent to date and they played a great game for the first two periods,” said Canadian head coach Howie Draper from the University of Alberta. “They were intense, played hard and were disciplined both offensive and defensively. It was a great test for our players and I’m glad they responded the way they did. We made seamless adjustments throughout the game and continued to get better, which has been our goal all along.
“We have some great leaders in the dressing room and they know what’s at stake. No matter who we play, we are focussed and eager for the medal round.”
In snowboarding, Audrey McManiman of St. Ambroise de Kildare, Que., qualified for the halfpipe semifinals thanks to an impressive seventh-place finish in the qualification round. The semis and final are set for Tuesday at 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. EST (9 a.m. & 11 a.m. Trentino), live on Eurosport TV and streamed at www.fisu.tv.
Frédérique Joncas of North Vancouver and Stephanie Meagher of Halifax finished 10th and 13th, respectively, and couldn’t make it past the qualifications.
In curling, the Canadian women evened their record to 4-4 and kept their playoff hopes alive thanks to a 5-3 come-from-behind win over the United States and a 7-2 defeat of Japan. Against the USA, skip Laura Crocker and her Wilfrid Laurier University crew scored one in the eighth end and two more in the ninth to steal the victory.
The Canadians, who currently sit sixth in the standings, wrap up round-robin play Tuesday against South Korea (5-3), one of the team they need to leapfrog to advance to the Final Four.
On the men’s side, Brendan Bottcher and his University of Alberta squad dropped their first game of the tourney, a lopsided 10-3 decision to the USA, but are still well in control of their destiny with a 6-1 record, good for second place in the standings. The U of A side closes out the preliminary round on Tuesday against Switzerland (3-4) and top-ranked Sweden (7-0).
Finally, in biathlon, it was a tough day for Canadian competitors in the pursuit events.
Keely MacCullough of Calgary was the top Canuck in the women’s 10-kilometre race finishing in 34th position, while Guillaume Bertrand of St. Barnabé, Que., was 46th in the men’s 12.5 km.
Team Canada website: http://english.cis-sic.ca/universiade/winter/2013/index
Trentino 2013 website: http://www.universiadetrentino.org/en
MONDAY, DECEMBER 16 RESULTS
Women’s 10km Pursuit
1.Weronika Nowakowska-Ziemniak, Poland, 33:05.6; 2.Monika Hojnisz, Poland, +26.1; 3. Tatiana Semenova, Russia, +40.7; 34. Keely MacCullogh, Calgary, Alta., lapped; 35. Jennifer Paterson, St. Albert, Alta., lapped; 38. Jessica Biggs, Winnipeg, Man., lapped; 41. Elizabeth Mawdsley, Fort Smith, N.W.T., lapped.
Men’s 12.5km Pursuit
1.Aleksandr Pechenkin, Russia, 35.09.9; 2.Sergei Kliachin, Russia, +0.4; 3.Aleksei Almoukov, Austria, +0.8; 46. Guillaume Bertrand, St. Barnabé, Que., +8:55.5; 48. Ryan Burlingame, Whitehorse, Yukon, +9:17.5; 50. William Poffenroth, Airdrie, Alta., +11.04.7; 58. David Poffenroth, Airdrie, Alta., lapped; 59. Nicholas Lenko, Oxbow, Sask., lapped.
Women’s Preliminary Round (9 matches)
CAN 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 1 2 x – 5
USA 0 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 0 x – 3
CAN 1 0 0 3 1 0 0 1 1 x – 7
JPN 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 x – 2
Men’s Preliminary Round (9 matches)
USA 2 2 0 0 6 0 x x x x – 10
CAN 0 0 0 2 0 1 x x x x – 3
Canada (5-0) wins 9-1 over Japan (3-2) in fifth and final round-robin match, finishes first in preliminary round; will face USA (3-2) Wednesday at 2 p.m. EST (8 p.m. Trentino) in semifinals.
Women’s Halfpipe – Qualification
7. Audrey McManiman, St. Ambroise de Kildare, Que., 65.25, advances to semifinals; 10. Anne-Frédérique Grenier, Beaupré, Que., 51.50, does not advance; 13. Stephanie Meagher, Halifax, N.S., 43.25, does not advance.
About the Winter Universiade
The Winter Universiade is a biennial international multi-sport event open to competitors who are at least 17 and less than 28 years of age as of January 1 in the year of the Games. Participants must be full-time students at a post-secondary institution (university, college, CEGEP) or have graduated from a post-secondary institution in the year preceding the event. The competition program of the Trentino Universiade includes alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, curling, figure skating, freestyle skiing, ice hockey (women & men), nordic combined, ski jumping, snowboarding and speed skating (short & long track).
About Canadian Interuniversity Sport
Canadian Interuniversity Sport is the national governing body of university sport in Canada. Every year, 11,000 student-athletes and 700 coaches from 55 universities and four regional associations vie for 21 national championships in 12 different sports. CIS also provides high performance international opportunities for Canadian student-athletes at Winter and Summer Universiades, as well as numerous world university championships. For further information, visit www.cis-sic.ca or follow us on: