"When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." funny quote that I heard from my OSU coach Chris MacKenzie. The 4 Nations Cup is very much like "lemonade" for us as we don’t get to play against the North American teams very often: only two times a year. On Friday, we made the game against USA very difficult for us and were not prepared to play discipline and simple hockey. We were definitely not ready for the fast pace of the game. This resulted in an embarrassing 1-15 loss, as USA scored on even strength, powerplay as well as short handed.
Understandably, our self-confidence as a team as well as individuals was shaken, but there was no time to feel sorry for ourselves as the bronze medal game against Sweden was scheduled at 2pm the following day. In the game, just like in the first game against Sweden a few days earlier, we got on the scoreboard first as Susanna Tapani scored a sweet short-handed goal. Sweden came back, just like in the first game, first 1-1, then 1-2. We could not bounce back and tie the game even when we pulled the goalie three minutes before the end of the third period and had few chances on 6 on 5. Unfortunately for us, Erika Grahm of team Sweden scored her second of the game in the empty net, and the game was over.
Next time we will face Sweden in the Euro Hockey Tour in Sweden in mid-December, and the North American teams in March at the World Championships. There’s still a lot of work for us to do! Meanwhile, I look forward to playing against the US and Canadian national team players in the WCHA.