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S. Korea routs Latvia for 3rd win at women's hockey worlds

2018/04/13 07:24

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SEOUL, April 13 (Yonhap) -- South Korea has routed Latvia for its third victory at the women's world hockey championship in Italy.

The 17th-ranked South Korea breezed past world No. 16 Latvia 5-1 at the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Women's World Championship Division I Group B tournament in Asiago, Italy, on Thursday (local time). Captain Park Jong-ah scored twice and set up another, as South Korea improved to eight points with two regulation wins, one overtime win and one loss, good for second place among six countries.

South Korea's finale will be Saturday against the 22nd-ranked Poland. Italy is leading the way with three regulation victories and a loss -- the lone defeat coming against South Korea earlier in the week.

The Division I Group B is the third-highest level of IIHF women's world championships, and the winner will be promoted to the Division I Group A competition next year. A combination of a regulation or an overtime victory by South Korea and a loss by both Italy and Kazakhstan, in third place with seven points, will put South Korea at the top at the end.

South Korea earned a promotion to the Division I Group B by winning the Division II Group A tournament last April.

Against Latvia, South Korea scored the first goal at 5:53 in the first period, with Park Jong-ah getting her first of the game after a Latvia turnover. Jo Su-sie intercepted the puck near the left point and fed Park charging down the right side, the captain fired it between the legs of Mara Trezina.

Then 53 seconds into the second period, Danelle Im made it 2-0 South Korea with a power-play goal, scoring from her knees at the top of the crease after defender Eliza Plata brought her down.

Kim Hee-won put South Korea ahead 3-0 midway through the frame, as she poked home the rebound following a point shot by Eom Su-yeon.

Park scored her second goal of the game, and her third of the tournament, at the 10:25 mark in the final period. Park controlled the puck near the sideboards after her initial shot was blocked, and she skated back out toward the high slot and ripped a shot through traffic for a 4-0 lead.

About four minutes later, Latvia finally got on the board with Anna Katrina Lagzdina's goal, but Han Soo-jin restored a four-goal advantage for South Korea with 10 seconds remaining in the game by scoring off a rebound on a power play.

The shots were 33-14 in favor of South Korea.

In this file photo from April 8, 2017, members of the South Korean women's hockey team celebrate their title at the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Women's World Championship Division II Group A tournament following a 2-0 victory over the Netherlands at Kwandong Hockey Centre in Gangneung, 230 kilometers east of Seoul. (Yonhap) In this file photo from April 8, 2017, members of the South Korean women's hockey team celebrate their title at the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Women's World Championship Division II Group A tournament following a 2-0 victory over the Netherlands at Kwandong Hockey Centre in Gangneung, 230 kilometers east of Seoul. (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr

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