NYKÖPING, – Canada’s National Women’s Team defeated Sweden 3-1 on Saturday inside Stora Hallen arena for its third straight win at the 2011 4 Nations Cup, earning the defending champions a spot in Sunday’s gold medal game against the United States.
The puck drops on the gold medal game at 3 p.m. local time/9 a.m. ET, after Finland and Sweden face off for the bronze medal at 11:30 a.m. local time/5:30 a.m. ET. The gold medal game will not be broadcast on television, but you can follow live updates at www.HockeyCanada.ca and on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/HC_TeamCanada.
On Saturday, Caroline Ouellette (Montreal, Que./Montreal, CWHL) deflected a pass from Hayley Wickenheiser (Shaunavon, Sask./University of Calgary, CIS) into the back of Sweden’s net to make it 1-0 midway through the second period. Sweden’s Elin Holmlöv tied it up less than three minutes later, but Canada came out strong in the third, with Jennifer Wakefield (Pickering, Ont./Boston University, HE) scoring the game-winner two minutes into the period and Jayna Hefford (Kingston, Ont./Brampton, CWHL) capping the scoring a couple of minutes later. Meghan Agosta (Ruthven, Ont./Montreal, CWHL) assisted on both third period goals, while Canadian netminder Shannon Szabados (Edmonton, Alta./Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, ACAC) made 27 saves. Later Saturday, the United States shut out Finland 10-0 to advance to the gold medal game.
Canada finished in first place during the preliminary round, defeating Finland 5-0 on Wednesdayand the United States 3-1 on Thursday. The Americans finished second, while Finland came in third and host country Sweden settled for fourth place. Canada’s win over the United States earlier this week marked the 100th time that the top two women’s hockey teams in the world have faced off since 1990.
Canada has won 12 gold and three silver medals at the 3 Nations/4 Nations Cup since the tournament’s 1996 inception. Last November, Canada edged the United States 3-2 in overtime of the final game at the 2010 4 Nations Cup in St. John’s, N.L., to win its second consecutive gold medal.
This season’s 23-player 4 Nations Cup roster includes:
Defencemen Laura Fortino (Hamilton, Ont./Cornell University, ECAC), Stefanie McKeough (Carlsbad Springs, Ont./University of Wisconsin, WCHA), Cassandra Poudrier (Lachenaie, Que./Dawson College, Collégial AA) and Lauriane Rougeau (Beaconsfield, Que./Cornell University, ECAC), along with forward Mélodie Daoust (Valleyfield, Que./McGill University, CIS), are making their debuts with Canada’s National Women’s Team at the 2011 4 Nations Cup.
Head coach Dan Church (North York, Ont./York University, CIS) is joined behind the bench at the 2011 4 Nations Cup by assistant coaches Doug Derraugh (Arnprior, Ont./Cornell University, ECAC) and Danielle Goyette (St-Nazaire, Que./University of Calgary, CIS), who also served as assistants with him at the 2011 IIHF 12 Nations Invitational Tournament and 2011 National Women’s Team September Camp/Fall Festival.
The 2011 4 Nations Cup has served as an evaluation opportunity for Canada’s National Women’s Team coaching staff and Hockey Canada scouts, led by head scout of National Women’s Team programs Melody Davidson.
Following the tournament, all players that attended Canada’s National Women’s Team September Camp/Fall Festival will continue to be monitored with their club teams throughout the 2011-12 season, in order to select those that will represent Canada at the 2012 MLP Cup in Germany in January and the 2012 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship.
NOTE TO MEDIA: Kristen Lipscombe, Hockey Canada’s coordinator of communications, is on site in Sweden with Canada’s National Women’s Team. Please contact her for any interview requests at firstname.lastname@example.org or +447872459044.
Follow Canada’s National Women’s Team at the 2011 4 Nations Cup on Twitter at www.twitter.com/HC_TeamCanada, become a fan of Hockey Canada on Facebook for updates from Sweden at www.facebook.com/HockeyCanada, and for more information on Canada’s National Women’s Team, please visit www.HockeyCanada.ca.