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Battling towards the Olympics - Canada vs USA

USA looks to strike back in Winnipeg

Madeline Rooney #35 of the United States reacts as Rebecca Johnston #6 of Canada celebrates a goal by teammate Brianne Jenner #19 in overtime of the game on December 3, 2017 at Xcel Energy Center in St Paul, Minnesota.
Madeline Rooney #35 of the United States reacts as Rebecca Johnston #6 of Canada celebrates a goal by teammate Brianne Jenner #19 in overtime of the game on December 3, 2017 at Xcel Energy Center in St Paul, Minnesota.
Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Team Canada and Team USA take their rivalry to NHL arenas in this installment of their pre-Olympic series.

Sunday’s game was very exciting as we were not subjected to Rod Black! Also, Canada won 2-1 in a tight game that went to an amazing overtime finish. Shannon Szabados looked her world-beating self and Brianne Jenner scored the overtime winner.

How to watch

Game Four
Start time: 8:00 pm EST
Broadcast: Live - TSN4, NHL Network , 10:30 pm - RDS2
Stream: TSN GO
Location: Bell MTS Place, Winnipeg

The series so far

USA and Canada have traded wins in the series, with the Americans winning 5-2 in Québec City and the Canadians returning the favour 5-1 in Boston. Team USA also beat Canada twice in the Four Nations tournament in Florida, which counts as part of the series if you’re USA Hockey’s marketing team and does not if you’re anyone else.

Top scorers for Canada have been Meghan Agosta (2 goals and 1 assist), Toronto Furies’ Natalie Spooner (2 goals), Jillian Saulnier, who was left off the 2017 Worlds roster (1 goal and 1 assist) and of course team captain Marie-Philip Poulin (1 goal and 1 assist).

For USA, the top scorers through two games are Brianna Decker (2 goals and 1 assist), Kunlun Red Star draft pick Alex Carpenter (1 goal and 1 assist) and Megan Bozek (2 assists).

Neither team seems to have decided on a starting goalie yet. However, Shannon Szabados has played 70 minutes over two games in the team’s Esso Series against AMHL players on November 22 and 28. Whatever’s wrong there seems to be improving.

Roster moves

Since the second game in the series, Canada has made two cuts to their roster and USA surprised everyone by adding three players.

Amy Potomak was Team Canada’s youngest player, having deferred the start of her college career by a year to try for the Olympics, but she would have had to have been an absolute star to make it. She’s spent more time in the penalty box than on the scoreboard (1 goal, 16 PIM through 18 games) , so her early departure makes sense.

Erin Ambrose, who was a Team Canada star in her Under 18 years and a major contributor to the Toronto Furies defence in her rookie season last year, is a big surprise. She’s generally considered better defensively than most of the other first-time defenders on Team Canada, had only two penalties in 16 games and put up 10 points. Ambrose is eligible to return to the Furies, who would benefit greatly from her presence, but we’ll see what she chooses to do next.

Team USA chose to go into centralization with a full Olympic roster and no extra players. It was assumed that barring disaster, they would carry the same 23 players into Pyeongchang. Instead, shortly following their first loss to Canada, defender Cayla Barnes was announced as a new addition to the team. She played all four games of the Four Nations tournament, putting up two goals and an assist and was entrusted with running the first power play unit. This is a significant display of trust, considering that Barnes is only eighteen years old. She won her third U18 World Championships gold medal only last year—fun fact, Cayla Barnes is the only player to win three consecutive gold medals at U18s—so USA Hockey is very familiar with her and what she brings to the table. If she doesn’t make the team for some reason it will be a serious injustice — since she had already started her season with Boston College, she’ll lose a year of NCAA eligibility.

Just under a week ago forward Haley Skarupa and defender Sidney Morin were also added. Skarupa, a former collegiate linemate of Team USA’s Alex Carpenter, has national team history—she was on the World Championship teams in 2015, 2016, and 2017, making her omission from the initial Olympic roster a bit of a surprise. She started the season with the NWHL’s Boston Pride, and has five points in four NWHL games this season. Morin is a more unexpected choice. She graduated from the University of Minnesota-Duluth last year, but has never played for the senior national team. She becomes the only Team USA player currently playing with a European club team — she’s an alternate captain with the SDHL’s MODO in Sweden and has 32 points over 21 games in her first season.

Schedule

Date Time Location
Date Time Location
Sunday, October 22 2:00PM EDT Centre Videotron, Québec City, QC
Wednesday October 25 7:30 PM EDT Agganis Arena, Boston, MA
Sunday, December 3 4:00 PM EST Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN
Tuesday, December 5 8:00 PM EST Bell MTS Place, Winnipeg, MB
Friday, December 15 10:00 PM EST SAP Center San Jose, CA
Sunday, December 17 7:00 PM EST Rogers Place, Edmonton, AB

Team USA Roster

Defense

2 Lee Stecklein University of Minnesota (WCHA)

3 Cayla Barnes Boston College (HEA)

5 Megan Keller Boston College (HEA)

6 Kali Flanagan Boston College (HEA)

7 Monique Lamoureux-Morando Minnesota Whitecaps

8 Emily Pfalzer Buffalo Beauts (NWHL)

9 Megan Bozek Buffalo Beauts (NWHL)

19 Gigi Marvin Boston Pride (NWHL)

22 Kacey Bellamy Boston Pride (NWHL)

23 Sidney Morin MODO Hockey (SDHL)

Forwards

10 Meghan Duggan Boston Pride (NWHL)

11 Haley Skarupa Boston Pride (NWHL)

12 Kelly Pannek University of Minnesota (WCHA)

14 Brianna Decker Boston Pride (NWHL)

17 Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson Minnesota Whitecaps

20 Hannah Brandt Minnesota Whitecaps

21 Hilary Knight Boston Pride (NWHL)

24 Dani Cameranesi University of Minnesota (WCHA)

25 Alex Carpenter Boston Pride (NWHL)

26 Kendall Coyne Minnesota Whitecaps

27 Annie Pankowski University of Wisconsin (WCHA)

28 Amanda Kessel New York Riveters (NWHL)

37 Amanda Pelkey Boston Pride (NWHL)

Goaltenders

29 Nicole Hensley Lindenwood University (CHA)

33 Alex Rigsby Minnesota Whitecaps

35 Maddie Rooney University of Minnesota Duluth (WCHA)

Team Canada Roster

Defense

3 Jocelyne Larocque Markham Thunder (CWHL)

4 Brigette Lacquette Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

5 Lauriane Rougeau Montreal Canadiennes (CWHL)

8 Laura Fortino Markham Thunder (CWHL)

12 Meaghan Mikkelson Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

14 Renata Fast Toronto Furies (CWHL)

18 Halli Krzyzaniak University of North Dakota (WCHA)

28 Micah Zandee-Hart Cornell University (ECAC)

Forwards

2 Meghan Agosta Hockey Canada

6 Rebecca Johnston Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

7 Laura Stacey Markham Thunder (CWHL)

9 Jennifer Wakefield Linköping HC (SDHL)

11 Jillian Saulnier Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

15 Mélodie Daoust Montreal Canadiennes (CWHL)

17 Bailey Bram Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

19 Brianne Jenner Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

20 Sarah Nurse University of Wisconsin (WCHA)

21 Haley Irwin Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

24 Natalie Spooner Toronto Furies (CWHL)

26 Emily Clark University of Wisconsin (WCHA)

29 Marie-Philip Poulin Montreal Canadiennes (CWHL)

40 Blayre Turnbull Calgary Inferno (CWHL)

44 Sarah Potomak University of Minnesota (WCHA)

Goaltenders

1 Shannon Szabados Hockey Canada

31 Geneviève Lacasse Calgary (CWHL)

35 Ann-Renée Desbiens University of Wisconsin (WCHA)

Alternate Goaltenders

Erica Howe Markham Thunder (CWHL)

Emerance Maschmeyer Montreal Canadiennes (CWHL)