Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team Clinches Series Against Hockey Rival U.S.
ROCKLAND, Ont. – Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team defeated the United States 6-4 on Sunday to win this summer’s three-game exhibition series between the world hockey rivals.
Laura Stacey (Kleinburg, Ont.) had two goals and two assists, while Emily Clark (Saskatoon, Sask.), Meghan Dufault (Winnipeg, Man.), Rebecca Kohler (St. Thomas, Ont.) and Cayley Mercer (Exeter, Ont.) added one apiece. The U.S. won the series opener 3-2 before Canada rebounded to take the second game 3-2.
Clinching the series is a big boost for Canada five months before the 2012 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship, said assistant coach Jim Fetter. The Americans beat the Canadians in the gold-medal game at last year’s world championship in Stockholm, Sweden.
“Definitely a confidence builder,” Fetter said. “Now they believe they can do it, they can be successful, and we beat both goaltenders as well, so no matter which one they play we feel pretty confident that we can get the job done.” The Americans swept Canada in the same three-game exhibition series last year.
“That wasn’t exactly the best feeling and then we lost last year in the finals of the worlds, so to finally come out on top against the U.S. is really good for us,” said Canadian captain Erin Ambrose (Keswick, Ont.). “I think just the feeling we have right now as a unit is really going to help us come January.”
Dani Cameranesi, Sydney Daniels, Hayley Skarupa and Dana Trivigno scored for the Americans, who raced out to a 3-1 lead in the see-saw battle. “I liked our will to battle and compete,” Fetter said. “We did obviously have to face some adversity, but having said that we were playing well, we didn’t get any bounces, or any breaks. The girls just stuck to the game plan.
“We just talked about wearing them down, keeping coming at them in waves, and that’s what helped us with the success in the end.”
The 2012 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship takes place in the Czech Republic next January.