GAME NOTES: CANADA VS. SWITZERLAND (FEB. 2)
TV: CBC | Stream: CBC.ca
With redemption on its mind, Canada’s Women’s Olympic Team opens its Beijing
campaign Wednesday against the Swiss. Most four-year Olympic cycles
offer more than enough hardships for athletes to overcome. Throw in a
global pandemic and a twice-cancelled IIHF Women’s World Championship? The
Canadian women are hungrier than ever.
Canada last saw the ice in the sixth game of the Rivalry Series against the
United States on Dec. 17, getting goals in regulation from Sarah Fillier and Emily Clark and ANOTHER overtime winner from Marie-Philip Poulin in a
3-2 overtime victory in St. Louis. The final three games of the series were cancelled due to the
rise of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.
The Swiss’ most recent game came Dec. 19 on home ice in Basel, when it got
goals from six different players in a 6-1 win over Germany, capping off a
three-team tournament that also included Sweden. Laura Zimmermann and Alina
Müller led the way with a goal and an assist each.
Canada last faced Switzerland
in the semifinals at women’s worlds in late August, getting two goals from Mélodie Daoust in a 4-0 win that
sent it to the gold medal game in Calgary.
Ann-Renée Desbiens earned a 10-save shutout as the Canadians
outshot the Swiss 62-10.
HOW IT’S MADE
Canada’s roster sports
10 Olympic rookies and 13 veterans. Of the vets, six have won an Olympic gold medal – Mélodie Daoust, Brianne
Jenner, Rebecca Johnston, Jocelyne Larocque, Marie-Philip
Poulin and Natalie Spooner.
Other than the 1998 Games in Nagano, where women’s hockey made its debut,
the 10 rookies are the most Canada has brought to an Olympics; it had eight
first-timers in 2002, 2014 and 2018, seven in 2006 and six in 2010.
WHAT TO WATCH
Rebecca Johnston and Marie-Philip Poulin are returning for their fourth
Olympics, looking to join an exclusive club of three-time gold medallists
after topping the podium in 2010 and 2014. Both have been lights-out at the
Games – Poulin has 11 goals (including gold medal-winners in Vancouver and
Sochi) and seven assists in 15 games, while Johnston has posted six goals
and 10 helpers in her 15 contests.
Switzerland has its own collection of veterans back for another Games; 11
Swiss return from the team that lost to the Olympic Athletes from Russia in
PyeongChang. And this group has already had international success this
season, making a run to the semifinals at women’s worlds in Calgary last
A LOOK BACK
While the Swiss women’s program has made huge strides, including Olympic
bronze in 2014, Canada continues to own the head-to-head history, winning
all 13 meetings.
At the Olympics, the Canadians have posted a trio of wins – Hayley
Wickenheiser and Cherie Piper had a goal and two assists each in a
10-1 win in 2010, Johnston scored once and added two helpers in a
5-0 prelim win in 2014, and Natalie Spooner netted a pair in a three-goal first period as part of
3-1 semifinal win in Sochi.
All-time record: Canada leads 13-0
Canada goals: 109
Switzerland goals: 2