The 2014 World Selects Invitational hockey tournament was held in Budapest, Hungary, last week, and for the third straight year in a row, the U16 Girls division was won by the West Coast Selects, a team comprised of American teenagers.
But it's not the threepeat that's making headlines. It's a video of West Coast Selects defender Hannah Bates, from Michigan, taking a two-handed slash to the back of the head. The slash, from Svetlana Starovoytova of Russia's Spartak team, is so hard that the stick breaks over Bates' helmet and makes a horrific THWAP that echoes around the arena.
If you haven't seen it yet, turn the sound on, then watch this:
The slash came late in a game the Russians were trailing 2-1. No doubt it was borne of frustration, but, um, you can't do that.
Amazingly, Bates was okay. "Shoutout to Warrior for making Russian-proof helmets that saved me from a concussion," she tweeted, along with video of the attack, uploaded by a family member.
Unsurprisingly, Starovoytova was thrown out of the game, and not a moment too soon. This chop was actually a follow-up slash, as this video begins with Bates down on one knee, reeling from a previous slash to the lower back Starovoytova had given her a split-second earlier.
And these were hardly her only infractions of the game. Here's the complete penalty summary from the two-period affair:
Boarding, slashing, unsportsmanlike conduct, cross-checking, and then that wicked slash. 16 minutes in total penalties for Starovoytova, the meanest 16-year-old girl in the history of hockey.
She didn't play another minute of the tournament, according to West Coast Selects coach Jesse Driscoll. Seems reasonable. It meant she was unavailable two days later when Spartak met up with the West Coast Selects for a rematch.
The Americans would win that too, then go on to win the gold, just as they did in Nykoping, Sweden in 2013 and Prague, Czech Republic in 2012.
s/t to Reddit