Canada vs. U.S. a go for final – Metro US

Canada vs. U.S. a go for final

Canada’s women’s hockey team will take on the U.S. in a rematch of the 1998 and 2002 gold medal games on Thursday after both countries cruised to easy victories yesterday at Canada Hockey Place.

Canada beat Finland 5-0 yesterday, while the U.S. took a measure of revenge on Sweden — the team that upset them in the semifinals in Turin in 2006 — trouncing them 9-1.

Canada is the defending champion from Salt Lake City and Turin and it is the third time that the two teams have met in the final since women’s hockey was included in the Olympics in 1998.

“It’s something that people love to watch and we love to play in,” said Canadian forward Jayna Hefford, of the upcoming battle with the Americans.

“It’s going to be a battle all night … (People are) going to see the best women’s teams that have ever been on the ice,” she predicted.

Yesterday, Canada opened the scoring about five minutes into the first period against Finland when Cherie Piper slammed home a backhand feed in the slot from Meghan Agosta.

Haley Irwin added a second later in the period when she poked in a loose puck past Finland goalie Noora Raty.

The Finnish goaltender was outstanding, stopping 45 of the 50 shots she faced and keeping the Finns in the contest until about the 17 minute mark of the second period, when Agosta snagged a rebound and put the puck top shelf.

Irwin added her second goal of the game in the third, while Caroline Ouellette added Canada’s fifth with a minute left in the same frame.

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