PYEONGCHANG, Korea, Republic Of – Canada’s gold-medal streak in Olympic women’s hockey is over, ending with a gut-wrenching shootout loss to the rival Americans at the Pyeongchang Winter Games on Thursday.
Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson scored the shootout winner in a 3-2 victory that ended a 20-year drought for the Americans.
Gigi Marvin and Amanda Kessel also scored in the shootout while goalie Maddie Rooney stopped four of Canada’s six attempts, including a clutch save on final shooter Meghan Agosta.
The Americans returned to the top of the podium where they were in 1998 when women’s hockey made its Olympic debut.
Canada’s women had won four straight gold and beaten the U.S. in the final for three of them.
But the Canadian women were denied the title in Pyeongchang by American women looking to avenge their 3-2 overtime loss four years ago in Sochi, Russia.
There was barely a dry eye among the Canadian players as they lined up to receive their silver medals.
It was the first Olympic women’s hockey final to go to a shootout.
Monique Lamoureux-Morando and Hilary Knight scored in regulation for the U.S.
Canadian captain Marie-Philip Poulin and Haley Irwin replied for Canada.
Canadian goaltender Shannon Szabados stopped 39 of 41 shots in regulation and overtime in her third straight start for Canada in an Olympic final.
Rooney, a 20-year-old in her first Olympic final, turned away 29 of 31 before the shootout.
Canada had edged the U.S. 2-1 in the preliminary round despite getting outshot almost two-to-one by the Americans.
After 20 minutes of scoreless four-on-four overtime, the gold-medal game went to extra shots.
After Lamoreux-Davidson beat Szabados – getting the Canadian goalie moving right and then sliding the puck under her glove – Agosta was stopped by Rooney to spark an American celebration.
With U.S. defender Megan Keller in the penalty box for an illegal hit on Poulin, Canada had a power play for the last 95 seconds of overtime, but couldn’t produce the winner.
A sloppy line change by Canada left Lamoureux-Morando all alone in front of Szabados and she buried her chance to tie it 2-2 at 13:39 of the third.
On the play preceding that, Rooney got just enough glove on a Laura Stacey shot on a Canadian odd-man rush.
The U.S. threatening to tie the gold-medal game early in the third on an odd-man rush, Szabados poke-checked the puck away from an all-alone Brianna Decker.
Decker took a hard hit in the head from Poulin on the play, but no penalty was called.
Poulin gave Canada a 2-1 lead at 6:55 of the second finding the top corner over Rooney’s right shoulder on a feed from Agosta.
Irwin evened the score 1-1 two minutes into the second period. Blayre Turnbull beat U.S.defender Lee Stecklein along the boards and whipped the puck to the front of the net for Irwin to deflect.
Canada was in penalty trouble in the first period. The Americans scored on their third power-play chance with 25 seconds remaining, when Knight redirected a Decker shot by Szabados.
The U.S. has won seven of the last eight world women’s championships and beaten Canada in the final in all of them.