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Women’s Hockey Wednesday: Canada vs USA in Lake Placid

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Camps are over, teams are set, the U-22 and U-18 national teams start a three-game series today.

Kristin O’Neill #10 and Emma Maltais #17 of Team Canada celebrate a goal by teammate Ashton Bell #26 in a semifinal game against Team Russia during the 2016 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championships
Kristin O’Neill and Emma Maltais are two of Canada’s prospects who will be featured at this week’s Summer Showcase.
Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

After a week of camp, Hockey Canada and USA Hockey have selected their Under-22 and Under-18 teams and are set to do battle in two three-game tournaments taking place simultaneously in Lake Placid, New York.

All six games will be streamed via HockeyTV.com, a paid service that runs you $29.99 a month (warning, it’s auto-renew, but if you buy and cancel immediately, it will let you have access for the full 30 days).

How to Watch

When: Wednesday, August 14 - Saturday, August 17
Where: Lake Placid Olympic Center, Lake Placid NY
Streaming: HockeyTV.com

If you’re in the area, USA Hockey is also selling tickets at the Olympic Center box office, or online. A pass for all games costs $30 USD for adults and $18 for seniors and those under 13.

Canada vs USA schedule

Day Time (EDT) Teams
Day Time (EDT) Teams
Wednesday Aug 14 4:00 PM Canada U-18 vs USA U-18
Wednesday Aug 14 7:00 PM Canada U-22 vs USA U-22
Thursday Aug 15 4:00 PM Canada U-18 vs USA U-18
Thursday Aug 15 7:00 PM Canada U-22 vs USA U-22
Saturday Aug 17 4:00 PM Canada U-18 vs USA U-18
Saturday Aug 17 7:00 PM Canada U-22 vs USA U-22

Who to watch

Full rosters of all four teams are available online here.

Under-18s

Again for the U-18s we don’t have a bunch to say. For Canada, there are only five players returning from their gold-medal winning squad from last season — they were the only 2002-born players on the team last year, everyone else is now 18 or over. This includes the captains: Kendall Cooper (D), Anne Cherkowski (F) and Nicole Gosling (D) as well as two other forwards, Ann-Frédérik Naud and Maddie Wheeler. Toronto native Lindsay Bochna is the only other Canadian player who attended this event last year.

By contrast, the Americans have three players who have been to both this event and the World Championships twice already. Only half of their players are new to competition at this level. Their captains are two of the “vets”: Makenna Webster and Maggie Nicholson. Abbey Murphy rounds out the experienced trio.

Under-22s

Both Canada and USA are sticking to the letter of Under-22: none of the 1997 babies from camp are participating in this series. The senior teams will meet up in September, we may see some of those players then. For that matter, we may see some of these players then, too.

The captains for this tournament are Jaime Bourbonnais, the only player on the team to appear at the 2019 World Championships, Kristin O’Neill, who was her teammate on the 2018 4 Nations Cup team last November, and Ashton Bell, who captained the 2017 Under-18 team for Canada. At camp last week Bell was moved from her traditional forward role to defence. Coaches must have liked what they saw because she stayed in that role all week.

How did the other players we highlighted last week do? The gimmes were Sarah Fillier, who also played at the 4 Nations Cup, Amy Potomak, who spent time with the senior team in 2016, 2017 and 2018, and Sophie Shirley, who spent a year in the CWHL before winning a national championship with Wisconsin this spring.

Only two of the players graduating from last year’s Under-18 team will be appearing at this tournament; forward Julia Gosling and goalie Raygan Kirk. Alexie Guay and Grace Shirley were among the surprises in Hockey Canada’s cuts.

Kelsey Roberts and Kendra Woodland round out the goalie trio for Canada, both U Sports players. Emmy Fecteau is technically the third U Sports player on the team but as has been pointed out to me, she is an incoming frosh and hasn’t actually logged any time with Concordia yet. Syracuse University’s Jessica DiGirolamo joins Roberts as the two complete newcomers to the team.

And because Annie has an impeccable eye for talent, the college players she pointed out as ones to watch—Ashton Bell, Emma Maltais and Maggie Connors—all made the team this week.

Meanwhile the USA U-22 players run the experience gamut from star defender Cayla Barnes (who has three U18 gold medals, one World Championship gold, and one Olympic gold) to two players who’ve never been in a tournament for Team USA at all. Goaltender Aerin Frankel, who has shone in her two seasons as starting goalie for Northeastern, and her NCAA teammate Skylar Fontaine, who scored at almost a point per game last season as a defender, are the newbies on the team. Northeastern’s won back to back Hockey East championships, and Frankel and Fontaine are big reasons why. Good to see them getting national team attention.

Frankel will be joined in the crease by St Cloud State’s Emma Polusny, who went to both 4 Nations and Worlds this year with the senior team as the third-string goalie; while she didn’t play at all in Espoo, she posted a .950% in Team USA’s 5-1 win over Sweden at 4 Nations. Forward Sydney Brodt from the University of Minnesota-Duluth is another senior team player to keep an eye on. Like Polusny, she played at 4 Nations and Worlds this season, and again like Polusny, made much more of an impact at 4 Nations—three goals and two assists in four games.

International hockey

Swedish women's national team has had enough – 43 players go on strike
"It breaks our hearts that one of the first reactions for us who are awarded the recurring honor of representing our country is how much financial loss we will incur by saying yes."

One day before the season is set to start with a training camp, the players announce that they are boycotting the national team.

In a joint letter under the hashtag #FörFramtiden (for the future), players write that they want better conditions and better behaviour in order to carry on their ice hockey careers. Therefore, they have reached the decision in question. ”Many of us have belonged to the Damkronor for a long time. Future generations are competing to do the same. Many of us have borne in mind the frustration that led to today’s decision for several years. Now it’s about the younger generation not having to that.”

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