In a thrilling battle between rivals Team USA and Canada, the United States women’s ice hockey team fell short in the final matchup of the preliminary stages.
If you’re a fan of international hockey, odds are you are no stranger to this rivalry. In all of the last 18 World Championships, the two titans of international hockey have met in the gold medal game. In fact, in the history of the Olympic event, these two countries are the only teams to ever take home the gold. Canada is the reigning champions after a heart-breaking defeat of the red, white and blue in Sochi back in 2014.
Despite Canada knocking off the U.S. in this game, there should be no mistake: The U.S. is far from out. Both teams had already qualified for the semi-finals and this game was more of a formality. Though, with the history between these two teams, this game was still a tough one to drop.
A Badger reared its head early in the first period, as UW all-time goal leader Hillary Knight had a great chance on a breakaway against Canada’s goalie Genevieve Lacasse. Lacasse was not stumped however, and the game remained scoreless until well into the second period.
In the middle stanza, Canada capitalized on a power play and took the 1-0 lead and did not relinquish their lead for the remainder of the contest.
At the end of the second, a questionable no-call on a possible offside play preceded another Canadian goal, increasing the lead to 2-0 against the Americans.
At the onset of the final period the US struck. Kendall Coyne went five-hole on Lacasse in what looked to be an energizer for Team USA.
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After a Canadian goal that got called back in the third, the game finished with the U.S. drawing the short-end of the stick.
There were some positives to glean from the rough loss to the long-time rivals. Team USA was getting shots off at an excellent rate, which may be the sign of an offensive explosion in the semifinals. They out-shot Canada at a surprisingly dominant clip of 45-23.
Team USA will use this loss as a motivator as they look forward to Monday’s semi-final.