Canadian forward Natalie Spooner scored a sweet hat trick in a 5-3 semifinal win over Finland on Sunday night in Kamloops, B.C. This means that for the 17th time in a row, it will be Canada vs. the United States for women's hockey supremacy. The final is set for tonight.
The United States reached the final by demolishing Russia 9-0 earlier on Sunday in the other semifinal. "Any time you can get a big win in the semifinals, it gives you a lot of energy and fire going into the final," said Meaghan Duggan, the U.S. captain. The Americans are the only undefeated team in this year's competition. They also won 6 of the last 8 Women's World Hockey Championships (WWHC).
Though Canada also beat Russia earlier in the tournament by a similar score of 8-1, they already lost to the U.S. 3-1 in a thrilling opening game to this WWHC. Canada's coach, Laura Schuler, saw the game against Finland as an important test. “I was really happy that we actually had that kind of a game heading into tomorrow — we’re now battle tested,” she explained afterward.
So the storyline is set! Will 2014 Olympic gold medallists Canada get themselves some sweet, sweet revenge for that recent loss? Or will the U.S. continue their recent trend of World Hockey Championship domination (they have won 6 of the last 8 WWHC tournaments).
One thing is for sure, it'll be a barn burner of a game.
Just like every Canada–U.S. hockey game!