By Karen Price | April 11, 2019, 10 a.m. (ET)

Hilary Knight competes at the Winter Olympic Games PyeongChang 2018 on Feb. 22, 2018 in Gangneung, South Korea.


One down, two to go.

The U.S. women’s ice hockey team opened the IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship medal round with a 4-0 quarterfinal victory against Japan and is now two victories away from its fifth consecutive title and ninth overall. 

Team USA will face the winner of the quarterfinal between Russia and Switzerland in Saturday’s semifinals. Team USA won all four of its group play matches with every player on the roster getting on the scoresheet.  

The quarterfinal was scoreless throughout most of the first period before two-time world championship MVP Hilary Knight scored with just 3:12 left before the break. 

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The three-time Olympian scored her second goal in the second period while on the power play. Knight is now just two goals shy of tying Cammi Granato’s record of 44 world championship goals and has scored in every game so far this year. 

Cayla Barnes and Kendall Coyne Schofield each scored in the third period to give the U.S. the victory. The U.S. outshot Japan, 51-10.

Maddie Rooney, who was in goal when Team USA won gold at the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, was back in net once again on Thursday. She stopped all 10 shots and earned her second shutout of the tournament. She was named U.S. player of the game following the win.

Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.