Switzerland stuns Sweden to get the bronze

 

The Sports Network

Sochi, Russia (SportsNetwork.com) - Switzerland scored four third-period goals to overcome a two-goal deficit then hung on late to upset Sweden, 4-3, to claim the bronze medal in the women's hockey tournament at the Sochi Games.

Sara Benz, Phoebe Stanz, Jessica Lutz and Alina Muller all scored for Switzerland, which managed just two wins in these Games, yet captured its first-ever Olympic medal.

Switzerland, which lost all three games in group play before beating Russia in the quarterfinals, came out slow and managed just one shot on goal through the first 20 minutes.

The Swiss had lost to Canada in the semifinals.

Trailing by two, Benz opened the scoring for Switzerland 1:18 into the third. When Sweden failed to clear the puck Sara Foster picked it up at the blue line and skated in. She then slid a pass to Benz, who put it past Valentina Wallner to cut the deficit to one.

Stanz then evened the game less than five minutes later with a terrific goal from her knees through the legs of Wallner.

Lutz gave the Swiss their first lead of the game with 6:17 left in the contest. After Sweden again failed to clear, Lara Stadler made a great play at the blue line and skated into the right circle, where she put a shot on net that Lutz eventually corralled and snuck past Wallner.

After the 15-year-old Muller seemingly put the game away with an empty netter with 1:07 to play, Sweden made things interesting on Pernilla Winberg's tally with 44 seconds remaining, but couldn't get the equalizer.

In the end it was more disappointment for a Swedish team that was also denied a bronze four years ago against Finland on a controversial overtime goal.

Sweden was trying for its third Olympic medal after winning bronze in 2002 and silver in 2006.

Michelle Lowenhielm and Erica Uden Johansson netted goals for Sweden, while Wallner stopped 22 of the 25 shots she faced.

Florence Schelling made 28 saves in the winning effort.

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