Hilary Knight (Sun Valley, Idaho) and Anne Schleper (St. Cloud, Minn.) scored and goaltender Jessie Vetter (Cottage Grove, Wis.) turned away 28 shots, but the U.S. Olympic Women's Ice Hockey Team fell to Canada, 3-2, in its final game of group play in the 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Shayba Arena. With the loss, Team USA will be the No. 2 seed in the medal round and learn its opponent for Monday's (Feb. 17) semifinal this weekend.
"I've been pretty open about the fact that it's great for our game and the fans to have a match up like this in the preliminary round," said Katey Stone, head coach of the 2014 U.S. Olympic Women's Ice Hockey Team. "I think it's a good test. For the players it certainly helps them get their feet wet when it comes to intensity and the environment."
Knight scored the game's first goal with a power-play marker at 17:34 of the middle frame. After working the puck around the perimeter, Alex Carpenter (North Reading, Mass.) sent a pass to Schleper at the right point. Schleper fired a high shot through traffic in front, where Knight redirected the puck past goaltender Charline Labonte.
The United States carried the 1-0 advantage into the third period, but Team Canada responded with a pair of goals in the first 3:54 of the frame. On the power play, Meghan Agosta evened the score at 2:21 when she buried a net-front pass from Hayley Wickenheiser. Then, 1:33 later, Wickenheiser wristed a shot from the right circle that ricocheted off of Vetter and a U.S. defender before trickling over the goal line to give Canada a 2-1 edge.
Agosta made it 3-1 Canada on a breakaway goal at 14:55. With Vetter pulled for an extra attacker, Schleper narrowed the deficit to one goal with a slapshot from the left circle at 18:55. Team USA gained a power play with 31 seconds left, but could not tally the equalizer.
The U.S. Olympic Women's Ice Hockey Team will be off until Monday (Feb. 17) when it will play in the semifinals of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games. Team USA will learn its opponent following Saturday's (Feb. 15) quarterfinals.