January 22, 2023 | at the FISU Winter University Games
The 1980 rink was buzzing Saturday night in anticipation of the Lake Placid Women’s Ice Hockey Final of the 2023 FISU World University Games.
Canada and Japan faced the Czech Republic and Slovakia after winning their semi-finals. The Canadians dominated the gold medal case with a score of 5-0.
Canada sent a strong signal from the start, beating their rivals 15-3 in the first period, but the score remained 0-0.
The winners, however, took control of the scoreboard in the second with four goals, starting with Audrey-Anne Veillette and Maria Dominico less than five minutes apart, followed by Maggy Burbidge and Céline Frappier.
Elizabeth Mar Mura completed the goal in the third minute. Kendra Woodland got a 12-defensive shutout.
This was the seventh time that women’s ice hockey was played at the FISU Games. Canada has played in all seven gold medal finals, winning four times.
For Japan, the silver medal is the best result in history. They took bronze in 2019 and 2015.
“It’s definitely an honor to play this last game and we’re focused on every game. Try not to overtake and finally be here, play this game and score the goal we wanted, it’s definitely surreal,” Dominico said.
She added that the team focused on their goals and made no mistakes.
“We were just trying to focus on our game plan. Play the game we know how to play, no matter what other teams bring, and today we’re lucky to be able to come out with that victory.
According to Dominico, teamwork was also a key to Canada’s success.
“I would say the players on this team are selfless, dedicated and share the same passion for the game as I do.
“We definitely have a unique team dynamic here that we’ve been trying to build since we arrived here and I think today showed how hard we’ve been working.”
Leah Herrfort shared her overall experience of Lake Placid.
“Everyone was very excited to be here, and when we all got together, it was like magic. It was amazing.
“Everyone has been there since day one and at the end of the day it’s a team effort. I mean, I knew we were going to be good and I knew we could win. But the most important thing was that we believed in ourselves.”
Written by Julieta Boschiazzo, FISU Young Reporter
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