Photo Credit: Stjepan Cizmadija

Day 5 of the 2022 IIHF Women’s World Championships Div II, Group B saw huge implications for the gold medal match and relegation battle.

Throughout the entirety of the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship Division II, Group B action, The Inner Sanctum will be bringing you a daily wrap of the tournament, breaking down the key moments of each match, and what the teams can do going forward.

If you missed it, you can find wrapups for Day 1 here, Day 2 here, Day 3 here, and Day 4 here.

Turkey v South Africa

Turkey entered the game winless, tied with Croatia at the bottom of Group B, and in danger of relegation. South Africa, meanwhile, was looking to solidify their position in third place in the group.

Just 35 seconds into the game, South Africa was retrieving the puck from their own net. Dilara Lokbas skated into the shot and her backhand shot deflected off a South African defender’s skate into the net.

Lokbas would double her goal tally and Turkey’s lead in the game 10 minutes later, skating from the right circle into the slot and firing short-side top shelf.

Hatice Dursun scored a powerplay goal for Turkey after South Africa’s Rhoda Dalene went to the box for a double-minor penalty.

Just over two minutes into the second period, Turkey scored again through Basak Demirkol.

South Africa’s goaltender Shaylene Rorke made 15 saves in the period, giving her team a chance. But Turkey blew the doors open in the third period.

Before a minute had expired they were up 6-0. Betul Taygar scored the first 26 seconds in, and Dilara Lokbas scored her hat-trick goal 22 seconds later.

Ayse Kocak made it 7-0 at 44:16 and Lokbas added her fourth goal at 47:16 to make it 8-0.

Goals by Sema Guven, and Kocak closed out the match, with the final scoreline 10-0 in favour of Turkey.

More Women’s Hockey News

2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship Division II, Group B – Day 4

2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship Division II, Group B – Day 3

2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship Division II, Group B – Day 2

Iceland v Croatia

Iceland needed to win this game to keep pace with Australia. Meanwhile, Croatia was looking to lift itself out of the relegation zone at the bottom of the group.

Just two minutes in Iceland broke the deadlock. A won face-off in the offensive zone gave Iceland possession and Jonina Gudbjartsdottir one-timed a shot past goaltender Julija Bazdar.

Three minutes later Iceland doubled their advantage. A won face-off to the point allowed Silvia Bjorgvinsdottir to pick her spot with a wristed top-shelf laser.

In the dying embers of the period, Iceland created a turnover on the forecheck. With Croatia in the middle of a line change, Iceland had a 3-on-1 attack. Bazdar saved the initial attempt, but Sunna Bjorgvinsdottir was on the doorstep to pot the rebound.

Iceland made a goaltending change to begin the second period, Andrea Bachmann replaced Birta Helgudottir. The move provided Bachmann rest with an eye on the upcoming match against Australia.

However, the team kept focused on the game at hand. Iceland doubled its lead in the first half of the second period through Sigrun Arnadottir, Herborg Geirsdottir, and Berglind Leifsdottir.

Shortly afterwards, Silvia Bjorgvinsdottir closed out the period with her second goal to give Iceland a 7-0 lead.

Silvia Bjorgvinsdottir completed the hat-trick at the start of the third. Later, Brynhildur Hjaltested and Ragnhildur Kjartansdottir scored to make it a double-digit scoreline of 10-0.

Iceland scored a shorthanded goal through Hjaltested to briefly lead 11-0. Croatia converted on the powerplay less than 30 seconds later through Eva Cavka.

Implications and Calculations

Iceland now faces Australia in a simple winner-takes-all final match. The game will be played at 12:00 am AEST Monday morning.

For the battle to avoid relegation, the picture is less clear. South Africa’s tournament is over and it must await the result of Croatia v Turkey at 3:45 am AEST Monday morning.

If Croatia loses to Turkey, Croatia will automatically be relegated. This is the simplest scenario to work out.

However, if Croatia defeats Turkey, there would be a three-way tie for last place, and things get a little more complicated.

In that scenario, head-to-head results would not determine placement. Croatia will have beaten Turkey, Turkey defeated South Africa, and South Africa defeated Croatia.

Therefore, according to IIHF rules, it will come down to goal-differential in the direct games involving the three teams. South Africa is -9, Croatia is -1, and Turkey is +10.

Any Croatia win, therefore, ensures a better goal differential than South Africa, and Croatia will stay in Group B. If Turkey loses by 19 goals or less, Turkey will stay in Group B.

Therefore, South Africa needs either Croatia to lose or Croatia to defeat Turkey by 20 goals or more.

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