Canada beats USA in OT for women's hockey gold

Published On: Feb 20 2014 09:54:20 AM HST
Updated On: Feb 20 2014 01:50:35 PM HST
Canada gold medal game goal

Laszlo Balogh/Reuters

Team USA wilted down the stretch Thursday, giving up a 2-0 lead late in the third period before losing the women's hockey gold medal game 3-2 to Canada in overtime.

Marie-Philip Poulin scored her second goal of the game on a five-on-three power play 8:10 into the overtime to give the Canadians the comeback victory.

Meghan Duggan broke open a scoreless game in the second period with a goal assisted by Jocelyne Lamoureux. Alex Carpenter added a third-period goal, with assists by Hilary Knight and Kelli Stack, to put the U.S. up 2-0.

However, Canada stormed back over the last three and a half minutes of regulation on goals from Brianne Jenner and Poulin to send the game to overtime.

The U.S. had a chance to go up 3-1 late in the third and likely seal the gold medal when a shot down the length of the ice hit the post on Canada's empty net.

Poulin's goals were her second and third goals of the tournament and first since Canada's opening 5-0 victory over Switzerland. She also added two assists over Canada's five games, tying her for Canada's lead in goals scored and overall points in Sochi.

The win was the 20th consecutive victory in Olympic play for the Canadians, who have won a medal in each of the five Winter Games in which the sport has been contested.

The silver for the U.S. also marked their fifth straight medal in women's hockey and their second straight second-place finish to Canada.

Of the five gold medal games played since women's hockey was introduced at the 1998 Winter Olympics, four have featured the U.S. and Canada, including Thursday's game. Sweden is the only other team to have played in a gold medal game, losing to Canada in 2006.

Team USA started off the Olympics with two dominating performances in Sochi, including a 9-0 rout of Switzerland in their second game.

The team got its first real challenge in its Feb. 12 preliminary round matchup with Canada, with the then 2-0 teams squaring off in battle that ended with Team USA falling 3-2.

With both teams earning a bye in the opening round of the playoffs, they each easily won their semifinal games to earn their spots in the gold medal game.

Amanda Kessel, Brianna Decker, Kendall Coyne and Knight finished the tournament tied as America's points leaders, with all four of them ending up with six points. Carpenter, Lamoureux and Megan Bozek were right behind them with five points each.

Kessel, whose brother Phil is also playing for the men's team, came into the game with three goals and three assists, tied for second in goals scored and overall points among all players in the Olympic tournament, behind only Finland's Michelle Karvinen and Sweden's Pernilla Winberg, who each had seven points.

Earlier Thursday, Switzerland defeated Sweden 4-3 in the bronze medal game, scoring four straight goals in the third period after falling behind 2-0. It was the first Olympic medal in women's hockey for the Swiss.

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