CANADA EDGED BY U.S. IN U18 SERIES FINALE
JASON LA ROSE
LAKE PLACID, N.Y. – Maggie Connors (St. John’s, N.L./Shattuck-St. Mary’s, USHS) scored on a third-period power play to make it a one-goal game, but Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team dropped a 3-1 decision to the United States to close out the three-game series on Sunday morning.
Despite the loss in the series, Canada still holds the all-time edge in summer showdowns, 18-15.
The Canadians held a massive 33-13 advantage in shots on goal, including 22-6 over the final 40 minutes, but could only put a single puck past U.S. goaltender Lindsay Reed.
Abbey Murphy opened the scoring for the U.S. just shy of the 12-minute mark of the first period, circling into the slot and beating Canadian netminder Madelyn McArthur (St. Catharines, Ont./Oakville, PWHL) for a power-play goal.
The goal was first allowed in the series by McArthur, who saw her shutout streak – which included a 26-save blanking of the Americans in Game 2 on Friday – end at just over 99 minutes.
The U.S. struck again with the man advantage for the lone goal of the second period; Madeline Wethington let go a slap shot from the left point that made its way through traffic and past McArthur for a 2-0 lead after 40 minutes.
Connors finally broke through for the Canadians six minutes into the third, carrying the puck out of the corner before roofing a shot over the short-side shoulder of Reed to make it a 2-1 game.
But Hannah Bilka restored the two-goal advantage for the Americans just over five minutes later, beating McArthur to the post on a wraparound to finish the scoring.
McArthur went to the bench in the dying minutes and Connors had a few chances in close to again draw the Canadians within a goal, but they would get no closer than two.
Players will head back to their club teams to open the 2017-18 season, with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team scheduled to be named in mid-December ahead of the 2018 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship in Dmitrov, Russia.