The first two days of women's hockey have gone by without any major surprises. The two powerhouses in Group A—USA and Canada—both dispatched their opponents on day one, while Sweden and Russia came out on top in their first games in pool play on Sunday. With all eight teams now having played their opening game of the 2014 tournament, the United States and Canada will be back in action on Monday, again hoping for favorable results.
Parity is the name of the game for the 2014 women's tournament, with the top four teams placed together in Group A, and the bottom four in Group B. Thus far, the results have been consistent with that, with Canada posting the only true blowout in a 5-0 win over Switzerland. All four of those top Group A teams are scheduled for Monday, and here's what it will look like.
United States vs. Switzerland: 3 a.m. ET
The Americans are coming off a 3-1 win over Finland in what could have been a very lopsided game if not for the efforts of Finnish netminder Noora Raty. The United States took 43 shots, while only surrendering 15, and the two goal margin of victory might not have completely told the story. For the Swiss, its first game was also met with an exorbitant shot total, as goalie Florence Schelling saw rubber an astonishing 69 times. To her credit, she posted 64 saves, but Canada also cruised to a 5-0 victory.
It will be another tough task for Switzerland, with the United States looking to keep pace with the Canadians two days before the rivals meet in pool play.
TV: NBCSN / NBCOlympics.com in the U.S., Sportsnet in Canada
Canada vs. Finland: 8 a.m. ET
If Finland has any chance of unseating the top-ranked Canadians, it's going to take another big effort Raty in net. After making 40 saves in her first outing, the task won't get any easier on Monday against Canada. While Finland was able to hold the Americans to three goals in its opening game, the Canadians pumped in 69 shots to the tune of five goals in its first crack at the tournament against Switzerland. While Raty will be key for Finland, 69 shots for the Canadians in its opener also meant a lot of puck possession, and less defending to do. Finland will have to find a way to get some zone time and create chances against the Canadians, and capitalize on any opportunities they do muster.
TV: MSNBC / NBCOlympics.com in the U.S., CBC in Canada.