Game Summary

Canada 3 - Norway 0

Saturday, March 18, 2006
Turin, ITA


In the round robin portion of the Paralympics, Norway beat Canada 4-1. But the Canadian Sledge Hockey Team had a different end result in mind in the gold medal final on Saturday, in Turin. And they followed their plan to perfection, en route to Canada’s first ever gold medal in sledge hockey at the Paralympics.

In the first period, Canada was first on the board, much to the delight of the two sections of Canadian fans and families assembled at the Torino Esposizioni. Billy Bridges (Oakville, ON) took the puck off Norwegian defender Rolf Pederson, circled the net and found Bradley Bowden (Orton, ON) alone in front who scored on Canada’s first shot on goal, for an early lead at 2:52. The first period ended at 1-0 Canada.

Canada had a great defensive second period, holding Norway without a shot until the final minute. Late in the period, with Norway down a man due to a penalty, Bowden flew past a defender and made a drop pass to Greg Westlake (Oakville, ON) who found the net. The goal came at 14:29, and Canada headed to the dressing room with a 2-0 lead.

Norway came out storming in the third period, but goaltender Paul Rosen (Thornhill, ON) was up to the task. Rosen was at his best in the third, holding the Norwegians at bay time after time. Eventually, in the final moments, with Norway’s goaltender pulled for an extra attacker, Bridges ended all hopes of a comeback for the Norwegians with an empty net goal. Canada wins 3-0 and captures its first ever Paralympic gold medal in sledge hockey.

Earlier in the day, USA claimed bronze with a 4-2 win over Germany.

Canada’s Sledge Hockey Team will take part in the Closing Ceremonies at the 2006 Paralympic Winter Games on March 19th, and returns to Canada on March 21st.

Of note, team captain Todd Nicholson (Ottawa, ON) is one of three male finalists for the International Paralympic Committee Overcome Award, which recognizes one male and one female athlete during the Closing Ceremonies. Nicholson was also nominated in 2002.

Jean Labonté   "It's the best moment of my life after the birth of my son.  I have been waiting for this moment for eight years. I dedicate my gold medal to my spouse Isabelle who supported me all this time and made some sacrifices and also to my two-year-old son who misses me.  I wish they could be here tonight."
Jeff Snyder (Head Coach)   "I'm really excited for the players.  We've worked extremely hard for the past four years.  We were really disciplined tonight and really focused on doing the job.  The players were nervous before the game but once we got that early goal they settled down.  It was great for us to score early.  We knew we had to do that against Norway to have any chance."
Raymond Grassi   "I'm feeling absolutely wonderful.  Couldn't be better.  We played an awesome game tonight and did exactly what we wanted to do, we were able to control the game."
Jeremy Booker   "I think it was just the adrenaline, the rush of the crowd.  That definitely gets me going and I think our fans had a negative effect on Norway."
Todd Nicholson   "It is quite the honour.  I didn't do it by myself, there were 15 guys out there and we all played our part.  After everything I have been through in the past year, it makes it all worthwhile."
Greg Westlake  "It was the perfect game and it came on the perfect occasion.  You can't ask for more, a shutout against Norway in the final, our goalie (Paul Rosen) had a great night.  It was just perfect."

Box Score CAN
Compte NOR

First Period/Première période

02:52 0:1 CAN EQ 27 BOWDEN B (6) 18 BRIDGES B

Penalty 14:01 CAN 2min. 12 WESTLAKE G - Holding

Second Period/Deuxième période

29:29 0:2 CAN PP1 12 WESTLAKE G (3) 27 BOWDEN B, 18 BRIDGES B

Penalty 21:13 23:13 NOR 2min. 3 PEDERSEN RE - Holding
Penalty 27:33 29:29 NOR 2min. 3 PEDERSEN RE - Elbowing

Third Period/Troisième période

44:56 0:3 CAN ENG 18 BRIDGES B (11)

Penalty 30:45 32:45 NOR 2min. 4 ROVELSTAD T - Interference
Penalty 32:33 34:33 NOR 2min. 3 PEDERSEN RE - Charging
Penalty 34:44 36:44 CAN 2min. 7 DORION M - Interference

Goaltenders CAN 57 ROSEN Paul
Gardiens de but NOR 1 JOHANSEN Roger

Shots on Goal Team 1 p 2 p 3 p Ttl
Shots on Goal CAN 3 4 2 9
Tirs au but NOR 7 1 10 18

Referee/Arbitre MORRISON Jonathan (USA)
Linesmen/Juges des lignes BOKAL Scott (USA), TOODE Maksim (EST)

Attendance/Assistance 4020



For more information:
Adam Crockatt Manager, National Men's Teams | Responsable, équipe nationale masculine (hockey sur luge)