Third period blitz gives Great Britain Women victory over Australia

Great Britain Women came from behind to beat Australia 5-1 in their opening game at the World Championship Division 2A tournament in Maribor on Saturday.

Angela Taylor (2), Leanne Ganney (2) and Beth Hill got the goals as GB smashed five unanswered goals in the finla period.

Netminder Samantha Bolwell turned away 30 of the 31 shots she faced, while GB forward Kimberley Lane was named player of the game.

A even first period saw GB outshoot Australia 9-8 with Saffron Allen being denied twice on the same shift after great feeds from Taylor.

Katherine Gale and Jodie Bloom also went close, but the first period ended goalless.

GB started the second session on the back foot and Bolwell had to make two massive saves on the penalty kill to keep the game scoreless.

Sophie Herbert went close on a short-handed two-on-one break for GB and Bloom was denied from the right-hand side, while Australian netminder Michelle Coonan saved brilliantly from Katie Henry at point-blank range.

Australia took the lead in the 38th minute as Michelle Clark-Crumpton skated into the offensive zone and then stepped out from behind the net to fire low past Bolwell.

Britain turned the game around with five goals in seven-and-a-half minutes to secure the win in the opening game of the tournament.

Beth Hill put away her own rebound after she skated into the offensive zone after 46 minutes, before Taylor scored twice in quick succession.

She went top shelf in the 49th minute and then calmly slotted past Coonan from the slot just over a minute later.

Ganney wrapped the game up with two goals in the final eight minutes of the game to give GB a deserved victory.

Head coach, Cheryl Smith, said: “It didn’t go all our way in the first two periods, but I was not worried.

“I know the damage these girls can do and they showed it in the third period.

“We made some changes in the second interval and the girls listened and responded, which was great.

“Australia played well and all credit to them they made life tough for us, but we got the job done and that’s the main thing.”

GB return to action on Sunday when they face DPR Korea (face-off 12.00 noon UK time).

(Image permission: Karl Denham)