SOCHI, Russia, Feb 11 (Reuters) - Russia secured a spot in the quarter-finals of the women's ice hockey tournament following a 2-1 win over Japan at the Sochi Olympics on Tuesday.
Alexandra Vafina broke a 1-1 tie with a short-handed goal late in the third period, setting off wild celebrations among the many flag-waving Russian supporters in attendance at the packed Shayba Arena.
Japanese goalie Nana Fujimoto was outstanding in the losing effort, turning aside 36 shots.
Russia, who reached the quarter-finals by securing one of the top two spots in Group B, close out their preliminary round on Thursday with a game against undefeated Sweden. (Reporting by Frank Pingue, editing by Ed Osmond)