Canada Women’s Ice Hockey Team claims a precious gold

The pressure on Canada’s ice hockey players was certainly not limited to the men. If anything, there was even more expectation on the women, who entered the competition as one of the hot favourites. Along with the USA, they looked a cut above any other team in the tournament, and brushed past the opposition in the preliminary games.

In their opening match the Canadians thrashed Slovakia 18-0, the biggest victory in Olympic history and a scoreline that would have been even more emphatic had it not been for the Slovakian goaltender, who made 49 stops in total.

In their opening three games the hosts scored 41 goals and conceded just two. It was a similar picture for the USA, who at the same stage had scored 31 and let in one. Even the semi-finals were one-sided, with the USA defeating Sweden 9-1 and Canada waltzing to a 5-0 win over Finland.

The stage was set, then, for a spectacular showdown between the North American heavyweights, just as everyone had wanted. A typically high-octane match began with the Canadians moving ahead in the first period thanks to two goals from Marie-Philippe Poulin, a lead they set about defending with great determination. The previously free-scoring Americans found the Canadian defence a far tougher proposition than anything they had come up against on their way to the final, and simply could not find a way through. Canada held on to win 2-0 and claim a precious gold, sparking mass celebrations across the country.