COLUMBUS, OHIO – Canada's National Women's Olympic centralized hockey team is set to face USA's National Women's Team at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio on Sunday, November 27th (5pm ET), in the first of two games this week. The two teams will meet again on Thursday, December 1st at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois (7pm CT) as Canada continues its preparations to defend Olympic gold at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Turin, Italy.
Neither game will have radio or televised broadcasts, but real time on-line scoring will be available at www.hockeycanada.ca.
These two games will mark the seventh and eighth games in 2005-06 between the two women's hockey rivals. Canada has a 6-0-0 record vs. USA this season.
At the 2005 Four Nations Cup in Hameenlinna, Finland, Canada defeated the USA 4-0 (round robin) on August 31st and 2-1 (championship game) on September 4th. Canada followed that up with victories on December 6th (3-2) and December 8th (6-0) in Saskatchewan. The most recent meetings between the two teams came in Turin, Italy at the 2005 Torino Ice Pre-Olympic Tournament on November 10th with Canada skating to a 5-0 win, and November 12th, the final game, which Canada won 7-0.
Following this two-game series, Canada and the USA will face each other two final times prior to the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in February, 2006. The final two pre-Olympics Canada vs. USA games will take place on December 30th in St. Paul, MN (Excel Energy Center) and on January 1st in Winnipeg, MB - 2:30pm – Local time (MTS Centre). Tickets available for the Winnipeg game at www.ticketmaster.ca
Canada's Women's team has been centralized full-time in Calgary since August 1st. Team Canada's centralized roster currently stands at 26 players, which includes one player who is making a return Sunday night to the state of Ohio, Tessa Bonhomme spent the 2003-04 season playing for the Ohio State Buckeyes women's hockey team in Columbus, Ohio.
Head Coach Melody Davidson will name 20 of the 26 centralized players prior to the start of the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, who will make up Canada's 2006 Olympic roster.
"Any time you get to play Team USA, our players are excited. The intensity level and competitiveness of these two quality hockey teams is always something special to be a part of," said Canada's head coach Melody Davidson.