KITCHENER, ON - Canada's National Women's Team captured the 2002 Four Nations Cup on Sunday, after going undefeated in the tournament, including a 4-2 win over the USA in the gold medal final.
Hayley Wickenheiser (Shaunavon, SK) scored the winner, her second of the game and 6th of the tournament, with 54 seconds to play, beating USA goaltender Erin Whitten, after being sent in alone by Danielle Goyette (St-Nazaire, QC). Caroline Ouellette (Montréal, QC) added an empty net goal to give Canada a 4-2 victory.
Wickenheiser opened the scoring early in the game as she took a Cheryl Pounder (Mississauga, ON) feed at the 4:37 mark of the first period and broke in all alone and beat Whitten with a low wrist shot between the legs. That was the only goal in the first period as Canada outshot the Americans 16-10.
Canada increased its lead in the middle frame as Canadian captain Cassie Campbell (Brampton, ON) received credit for a goal which bounced off her skate in front of the American goal at 8:13. Pounder recorded her second assist of the game by throwing the puck at the American net, resulting in the goal. USA would tighten Canada's grip with a power play marker at the 18:34 mark, when Jessica Tabb deflected a Courtney Kennedy point shot past Canadian goaltender Sami Jo Small (Winnipeg, MB).
USA tied things up in the final frame as Katie King broke in alone on a breakaway and beat Small with a shot to the top left corner. This set the stage for Wickenheiser's heroics.
With the victory, Canada has now won all but one (1997) Nations Cup tournaments, dating back to 1996.
Canada's victory at the 4 Nations Cup marked the second international tournament win by a Canadian National Team on Sunday. Canada's National Men's Team won the Deutschland Cup earlier today in Hannover, Germany with a 2-0 win over Germany.
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