Alex Woken notched the game’s first point when she found the back of the net 3:38 into the first period. The goal came after a breakaway pass from Mekenzie Steffen and the puck sailed past Czech Republic goaltender Katerina Zechovka.
The U.S. took a 2-0 lead in the third when Samantha Davis passed to Caitrin Lonergan, who was later named Player of the Game, beat Zechovka. With 24 seconds left in the third, Melissa Samoskevich would make the score 3-0 after the Czechs attempted to clear and she picked up the puck.
“I was really pleased with our effort and I thought we played very well tonight,” said Joel Johnson, head coach of the U.S. National U18 Team. “The Czech Republic had a good game plan against us and their goalie played well.”
Lonergan said Zechovka played well and the U.S. got some lucky bounces.
“I think we played great and we will just keep better from here,” she said.
Alternate Captain Sammy Davis said the team is buzzing with positive energy after the game.
“We only get to wear this jersey so many times, it’s an honor wearing this jersey,” she said.
The U.S. out-shout the Czechs 34-8 in the contest. The team beat Canada 2-1 in a shootout on Monday, and now stands in first place in Group A with five points.
Team USA will face Russia on Thursday, Jan. 8, at 7 p.m. ET to close out the preliminary round play. The game will be broadcast on FastHockey.com.
Quarterfinals will be Jan. 9 and semifinals are slated for Jan. 11. Medal games will be Jan. 12.