Great Britain went down to a 7-1 defeat at the hands of top seeded Slovakia in Riga today but gave their opponents plenty of food for thought as Mike Clancy’s squad continue to find their feet back in Division 1 Group B.

Nicole Jackson made a third straight start in net for GB who iced an unchanged lineup after yesterday’s recovery day.

Slovakia opened the scoring inside two minutes, Iveta Klimasova netting with a wrist shot from the high slot. It was 2-0 at 8.15 when, despite Nicole Jackson making multiple saves, Simone Bednarik forced home the rebound.

In the 12th minute GB had their first powerplay and made it count. Abbie Sylvester and Charlotte Harris combined to get the puck to Katie Marsden at the point and her low wrist shot found the corner beyond Risianova and GB were on the board at 12.40. Further chances came but the score remained 2-1 to Slovakia after twenty minutes.

The former top division side made their quality count in the middle period with four unanswered goals. Janka Hlinkova netted at 21.35 from the top of the crease, then Slovakia had their own powerplay chance as Sylvester was called for tripping but the GB penalty kill held firm. It was 4-1 at 28.06 when Ema Galisova’s one timer found the top corner, before Lilien Benakova scored just over a minute later for 5-1. GB called time out at this point.

GB’s penalty killers were back in action as first Ellin Rees then Ellie Wakeling were penalised giving Slovakia 45 seconds of five on three time. However Nicole and the defensive skaters were great on the PK and GB returned to full strength. Slovakia did net a sixth however before the break, Galisova with her second of the game at 38.52.

Great Britain found their game again in the final frame and created problems for Slovakia, with goalie Risianova forced into some good saves. Slovakia were also frustrated at the offensive end of the ice, Nicole Jackson with 14 saves in the period and Slovakia forced into taking penalties and icing the puck under pressure.

The group leaders did finally manage to avoid being shut out for the whole period with a late goal by Hlinkova. The forward finished a quick breakout and netted from the top of the crease at 59.04.

Katie Marsden was named GB’s player of the game while Slovakia goalie Andrea Risianova picked up the award for the opponent.

Thursday is the second rest/recovery day as well as official team photo day. GB return to game action on Friday against Slovenia, face off 4pm local time (2pm UK).

Women’s World Championship Division I Group B – Great Britain results & schedule 
Sunday 31st March: Great Britain v Italy – W 1-0 (Alderson-Smith 1+0, Marsden & Horwood 0+1; Jackson 44 saves)
Monday 1st April: Poland v Great Britain – L 2-3 (OT) (Sylvester & Horwood 1+0, Headland, Gale, Alderson-Smith 0+1; Jackson 26 saves)
Wednesday 3rd April: Slovakia v Great Britain – L 1-7 (Marsden 1+0, Sylvester & Harris 0+1; Jackson 39 saves)
Friday 5th April: Slovenia v Great Britain – 16:00 (14:00)
Saturday 6th April: Great Britain v Latvia – 19:30 (17:30)

Photo credit: Karl Denham