Pergine, Italy - Katie Augustine (West Chester, Ohio/Miami University) scored twice and two other U.S. skaters added tallies to help the U.S. Women's National University Team top Russia, 4-2, in the team's first game at the 2013 Winter World University Games here today.
"We weren't sure how good we were going to be going into the game, but now we know," said Mo Stroemel, head coach of the 2013 U.S. Women's National University Team. "This was a really good Russian team. Not only do we know we have a good team, but a great bunch of people on this team. As a staff, we're looking forward to continuing the tournament on Thursday and helping this group reach its potential."
Strong play in the opening period helped Team USA build a 2-1 lead entering the first intermission. Augustine put the U.S. on the board with help from Alisha DiFilippo (Hope, R.I./University of Rhode Island), giving the United States a 1-0 advantage. Then, after a Team Russia goal knotted the score at 1-1, Ramey Weaver (Eagle River, Alaska/Robert Morris University) scored to give Team USA the lead for good. Cassie Catlow (Saundertown, R.I./University of Rhode Island) and Ellie Gleason (Edina, Minn./University of Minnesota) recorded assists on the play.
Molly Sparks (Eagan, Minn./University of Minnesota) added an unassisted goal in the middle frame to increase the U.S. lead to 3-1 after two periods.
The Russians closed the gap to 3-2 with a goal early in the final stanza, but Augustine capped the scoring with an assist from Hayley Williams (Crete, Ill./Robert Morris University).
Katie Vaughan (Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn State University) started in goal for the U.S. and made several tremendous saves, including a stop on a third-period penalty shot.
The U.S. Women's National University Team is next schedule to play on Thursday (Dec. 12) when it squares off with Great Britain. Puck-drop is scheduled for 6:00 a.m. ET.