Saturday, April 1, 2000
Women's 2000 Worlds Preview
By DONNA SPENCER -- Canadian Press
MISSISSAUGA, Ont. -- A capsule look at teams competing in the women's world hockey championship April 3-9:
History: Five-time winner, 25-0 overall. Beat the U.S. in all five finals.
Scouting report: Well-balanced front lines with solid goaltending in Sami Jo Small and Kim St-Pierre.
Players to watch: F Hayley Wickenheiser, F Tammy Lee Shewchuk.
History: Five-time silver medallist, has yet to beat Canada at worlds, but beat Canada for gold medal at 1998 Olympics.
Scouting Report: Will have strong, disciplined team play because 14 of the 20 players have been training and playing together since November under the Select Team program.
Players to watch: F Cammie Granato, D A.J. Mleczko.
History: Five-time bronze medallist. Only a matter of time before Finns reach the level of Canada and the U.S.
Scouting Report: Hard-working and tenacious. Play North American style.
Players to watch: F Petra Vaarakillio, F Sari Fisk.
History: Have finished either fourth or fifth in five world appearances and sixth at the Olympics.
Scouting Report: Young team, carrying 10 second-year players, individually skilled, will have to fight off China to stay in the top four.
Players to watch: F Kristina Bergstrand, Lotta Almblad.
History: Part of the second tier of international women's hockey along with Sweden, have been fourth or fifth at worlds and Olympics.
Scouting Report: Have good goaltending, not a lot of offence, can win low scoring games.
Players to watch: G Lina Huo, Hong Guo.
History: Finished sixth in two world appearances.
Scouting Report: Players have the individual skills, but not the team game and systems.
Players to watch: F Ekaterina Pashkevich.
History: Haven't played in worlds since the first one in 1990, finished last in 1998 Olympics.
Scouting Report: Same as Russia, individual skills are there, but need work on team game.
Players to watch: The youngest player in the tournament, 15-year-old defenceman Emi Nonaka.
History: Best finish in three appearances at worlds is seventh.
Scouting Report: Has nine players under the age of 20, plays hard, but players need seasoning.
Players to watch: G Stephanie Wartosch.