POULIN SCORES TWICE IN THIRD, CANADA EDGES ROYALS AT ICEBREAKER
JASON LA ROSE
CALGARY, Alta. – Marie-Philip Poulin (Beauceville, Que./Montreal, CWHL) scored the game-winning goal in the third period and added insurance into an empty net in the last minute, sending Canada’s National Women’s Team to a 3-1 win over the Calgary Royals on Saturday night at the Icebreaker Tournament.
The win means the Canadians will face the Calgary Northstars in the final of the start-of-season tournament on Sunday (5 p.m. MT); the Northstars beat Canada 4-2 in the opener Thursday.
Canada jumped to an early lead thanks to Bailey Bram (Ste. Anne, Man./Calgary, CWHL), who found a rebound in the crease and knocked in the 1-0 goal just 1:45 after the puck dropped.
The Royals ratcheted up their offence in the second period, peppering Canadian goaltender Geneviève Lacasse (Kingston, Ont./Calgary, CWHL) with 16 shots, and tied the game on an Alex Danis goal at 3:22.
Lacasse was perfect from there, making 22 of her 29 saves over the final 40 minutes.
She and Royals counterpart Jack McNaughton made their best stops less than a minute apart late in the middle frame, keeping the game even heading to the third period.
The Canadians took the lead for good with 7:50 to go when Poulin hammered in a one-timer off a cross-ice feed from Natalie Spooner (Scarborough, Ont./Toronto, CWHL), who finished with two assists on the night.
Mélodie Daoust (Valleyfield, Que./Montreal, CWHL) did the work on the third goal, carrying the puck deep before finding Poulin alone in front for the tap-in insurance goal with 32.6 seconds remaining.
Canada finished the preliminary round with a 2-1 record against Alberta Midget Hockey League competition; in addition to its win Saturday and loss to the Northstars, it topped the Calgary Flames 4-1 on Friday night.