REYKJAVIK – The New Zealand women’s national team had its best year ever when it won the 2011 IIHF World Women’s Championship Division IV that was played in the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik.
The "Ice Fernz", as the team is called in New Zealand, swept through the tournament on the Arctic island to eventually receive the gold medals.
The New Zealanders had their toughest opponents, eventual silver-medallist Korea and bronze-medal winner Iceland, first.
The fans at the Laugardalur Arena cheered on Birna Baldursdottir’s opening goal after ten minutes, but Casey Redman equalized five minutes later and Emma Gray gained the lead for New Zealand with her goal at 7:59 of the second period. The game ended with a 3-1 score after Ashley Cunningham’s last-minute goal.
Against Korea the New Zealanders also conceded the first goal – Jae Yeon Han scored 22 seconds into the game – but turned the game around for another 3-1 win. Jasmine Horner-Pascoe and Casey Redman scored in the first period, Gray added the third marker.
The other two games against South Africa and Romania the New Zealanders also won with the same score, taking both games by a score of 7-2.
Korea secured the silver medal with the last game of the event by defeating Iceland 4-1 in front of an almost-capacity crowd of 910 fans.
Iceland won the bronze, followed by Romania in fourth place and South Africa.Final Ranking:
1. New Zealand 12
2. Korea 9
3. Iceland 6
4. Romania 3
5. South Africa 0Individual Awards as selected by the Tournament Directorate:
Best Goalkeeper: So Jung Shin, Korea
Best Defenceman: Anna Agustsdottir, Iceland
Best Forward: Emma Gray, New ZealandClick here for scores and stats.Click here for the photo gallery.