MOOSE JAW, Sask. – Canada’s National Para Hockey Team came up short in its bid to claim gold on home soil, falling 6-1 to the United States in Sunday’s gold medal game at the 2023 World Para Hockey Championship.
Canada would have its chances, but it was the United States that held a two-goal advantage after the opening 15 minutes. The Americans would continue to add to their lead until captain Tyler McGregor (Forest, Ont.), who was named Player of the Game, would finally solve netminder Jen Lee 4:22 into the third period for Canada’s lone goal.
“I’ve been doing this a long time and the expectation and hope is to leave every tournament with a gold medal. You have to be reasonable as well and understand that the path for doing that is different for everybody,” McGregor said. “To be quite honest, for a core group of us, that has been really, really hard. We’ve had so many heartbreaks, but we’ve had new people that inject our room with so much passion and energy. You have to show up to the gold medal game under a lot of pressure, play your best, make plays under pressure and be ready for whatever comes your way. I think we’re capable of doing that and we showed that we’re at least on the path to doing so. It looks like a 6-1 game; we had our chances, we didn’t capitalize and that’s one of the differences right now. When they get the chance they make the most of it, that’s part of our process and we’ll get there.”
Dominic Larocque (Quebec City, Que.) made 17 saves.
A full game summary and recap can be found at HockeyCanada.ca.
“I think our players should be really proud of what they invested this year,” said head coach Russ Herrington (Unionville, Ont.) “We talked a lot about not defining yourself by what you do or what you achieve; you define yourself by who you are and how you invest in the process to get there. We’re so proud as athletes and staff of the steps we’ve taken. It’s an arduous journey and we feel like we’ve excelled the process a little bit, but there’s a road still to travel to get to the top of podium.”
Canada finished with a 2-1 record in the preliminary round, finishing second in the Group A standings with wins over Korea (15-1) and Czechia (2-1) before falling to the United States (3-0). Canada then booked its spot in the gold medal game with a 5-0 semifinal shutout of Czechia.
In 12 appearances, Canada has captured four gold medals at the World Para Hockey Championship (2000, 2008, 2013, 2017), in addition to four silver (2015, 2019, 2021, 2023) and three bronze (1996, 2009, 2012).
For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Para Hockey Team, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or following along through social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.