GAME NOTES: Canada vs. United States (August 26)
TV: TSN | TSN Direct
The preliminary round at the 2021 IIHF Women’s World Championship has
reached its final day, and it’s time for the main event –
Canada’s National Women’s Team faces off against the United States in the 153rd edition of one of the
greatest rivalries in sports.
Canada rolled to its third victory in as many tries in Calgary on Tuesday
outshooting Switzerland 63-12 in a 5-0 win. Natalie Spooner scored twice to leave her just a single point shy of a
major milestone (see below), and Mélodie Daoust added a goal and two
assists to pace the Canadian offence. Emerance Maschmeyer got her first
start between the pipes and was perfect, stopping all 12 Swiss shots.
The U.S. posted its third-straight clean sheet earlier on Tuesday, getting
11 saves from Alex Cavallini in a 6-0 win over ROC. Hilary Knight scored a
historic goal (more on that below), and Lee Stecklein and Kelly Pannek had
a goal and a helper apiece for the Americans, who have yet to allow a goal
through three games.
In the final game before the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the hockey world,
Canada closed out the 2019-20 Rivalry Series with
a 4-3 overtime loss to the Americans in Anaheim, Calif., on Feb. 8, 2020. Jill Saulnier scored
a goal and set up another to help the Canadians to a 3-2 lead after 40
minutes, but Monique Lamoureux-Morando tied it midway through the third
period and Megan Bozek won it on the power play 42 seconds into the extra
WHAT TO WATCH
The first-period drought continues for Canada, which has not scored a goal
in the opening 20 minutes in any of their first three games. They pounded
Swiss netminder Andrea Brändli with 21 shots in the first on Tuesday, but
came up empty again. The second period? That’s another story – the
Canadians potted four in the middle frame against Switzerland, and have
nine middle-stanza goals so far.
On the milestone watch, Spooner needs just a single point to become the
14th player to reach 100 career points with Canada’s National Women’s Team,
and the first to get to the mark since Rebecca Johnston in 2017. Will it
come Thursday? Spooner has 24 points (10-14—24) in 59 career games against
For the U.S., Hilary Knight continues to rewrite the women’s worlds record
book. The U.S. sniper counted her 45th career WWC goal in the win over ROC,
passing American legend and Hockey Hall of Famer Cammi Granato for the most
ever at the tournament. It also pulled her even with Granato on 78 points,
good for the most by an American. A pair of Canadians – Hayley Wickenheiser
(37-49—86) and Jayna Hefford (40-43—83) – top the all-time scoring chart.
A LOOK BACK
The Canadians and Americans have been frequent foes at women’s worlds, and
the head-to-head history is all but even. The U.S. holds a narrow 15-13
edge, with both teams scoring 79 goals across those 28 games. Canada comes
into Thursday having lost eight in a row to the Americans at the WWC.
The most recent meeting came in the prelims at the 2019 worlds, when Sarah
Nurse and Brianne Jenner scored power-play goals in
a 3-2 Canadian loss. Canada’s last win came in a preliminary-round matchup in 2013 in Ottawa,
when it scored twice in the final nine minutes to force overtime before
Meghan Agosta and Jennifer Wakefield netted in the shootout to give the Canadians a 3-2 victory.
All-time record: Canada leads 83-67-1 (17-16 in OT/SO)
Canada goals: 414
United States goals: 375