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Finland's "lionesses" maul Russia in women's world ice hockey opener

The female national team beat Russia 4-0 on Saturday.

Viivi Vainikka (vas.), Elisa Holopainen ja Minnamari Tuominen juhlivat Vainikan osumaa.
The Finnish team celebrating their third goal of four, made by Viivi Vainikka (left). Image: AOP

Finland secured its first women's ice hockey World Championship victory on Saturday by beating Russia's team 4–0.

The Finnish team took the lead to 1–0 after just six minutes into the first period, when Petra Nieminen sank the puck into the upper corner of Russia's goal.

After the first point keeper Valeria Merkusheva staunchly defended the Russian goal from a barrage of attempts by the lionesses. Merkusheva caught each puck until early in the third and final period, when Sanni Hakala gave Finland a 2–0 lead.

Finland's game opened up after the second goal, filling in the scoreboard for the rest of the match. The game ended 4–0 after additional goals by Viivi Vainikka and Elisa Holopainen.

Goalkeeper Noora Räty kept the counter for away goals at zero during the whole of the match.

The IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship 2019 is taking place in Espoo, with finals set for 13 April.

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