Team Canada showed the world yesterday why hockey is called our game when they won a heart-stopping battle against the United States 3-2.
Even before the game had begun, fans lined arenas across the country, including Rexall Place, with young and old waving a sea of red maple leaves.
And as the lights dimmed in the crowded arena, nary a blue jersey could be seen.
After lining up outside the venue at 11:30 a.m., for $5 fans got a bird’s-eye view of the game on the Jumbotron screen and at the same time were supporting minor hockey in the city.
It brought tears to the eyes of Michelle Reginbald-Andrews as she watched the Canadian team accept its gold medals after the energetic game.
“It feels unbelievable, awesome,” she said.
Like every other fan in the arena, Reginbald-Andrews was rooting not for one player, but for Canada.
But there were some heart-stopping moments. Everyone, including Rexall staff, police officers and the most avid hockey fans, let out a howl of outrage in the third period when, with seconds left in the game, Team USA scored to earn a 2-2 tie. It became a true sudden-death match.
But Canada pulled off the win in overtime, lifting the spirits of Canadians watching across the country.
“It feels great,” said Don Gauthier. “As far as I was concerned, it was a team effort.”
In the end, Rexall Place rocked as the team triumphed. Strains of O Canada were sung by all, as overjoyed strangers hugged one another after the win.
It was a day to smile a little bit longer, to be proud to be Canadian.