USA defeats Canada 3-1 in Women’s World Championship opener

The tension in Kamloops, British Columbia was palpable in the primetime game of day one at the Women’s World Championship. There is nothing like a good old throw down between the United States and Canada to get the heart racing.

Throughout the first period and a majority of the second the teams traded scoring chances without being able to break through.

With 55 seconds remaining in the second, Team USA’s Megan Keller was whistled for holding; giving the Canadians their first power play of the game.

The period came to a close with the score tied at zero, and 65 seconds remaining on the man advantage.

Laura Fortino drew the penalty on Keller, and proceeded to make her pay for it. Just 14 seconds into the third, Fortino jumped on a rebound from fellow CWHL MVP nominees Marie-Philip Poulin and Natalie Spooner.


The standing room only crowd of over 5,000 went nuts for their hometown crew. The Canadian women took full advantage of the momentum swing in their direction. 

Goaltender Emerance Maschmeyer, making her official women’s national team debut, absolutely stood on her head in the third period. The US threw everything they could at the 21-year-old.


The Americans fired 38 shots on goal, with 14 of them coming in the third period.

It appeared Maschmeyer had Hilary Knight’s number, but finally, the sniper in Knight won over. USA ties the game at 1-1 midway through the final period.


After playing 4-on-4 for 43-seconds, the USA went on their sixth power play of the game. The Canadians had managed to hold of the usually lethal American power play squad, but they were tempting fate. 

Brianna Decker, the reigning NWHL and Isobel Cup MVP, picks up the Monique Lamoureux rebound and puts in behind Maschmeyer.

The power play finally comes through, giving the USA the 2-1 lead with 6:05 to go.


Missing from Team USA’s defense was stalwart Kacey Bellamy, and it showed as some of the younger Americans struggled with the onslaught of Canadian shooters. A source close to USA Hockey tells Puck Daddy the decision to not play Bellamy – who was named an alternate captain prior to the tournament – was a coach’s decision, and shouldn’t be read into too much.

American blueliner, Megan Keller, had a turnover late in the third that went to literally the worst person possible (for USA fans) – the ‘Golden Girl’ herself, Marie-Philip Poulin.

Team Canada’s captain had goaltender Alex Rigsby beaten, but luckily for everyone in red, white, and blue, MPP hit the crossbar.


That was the best opportunity the Canadians could muster for the rest of the game.

The final nail in the coffin was delivered by Knight, her second goal of the game, into the empty net from the red line.


Team USA wins the first game of the first round by a score of 3-1.

The Americans have a short turnaround; Game 2 is on Tuesday, March 29 at 3:30pm PT against Team Finland. Game 2 for the Canadians is also on Tuesday, but at 7:30pm PT against Team Russia. Broadcast information can be found here.

Unless something monumental happens, these two teams are on a collision course for the gold medal game.