Expectations were high for both North American women’s teams heading into the first semi-final on Day 8 of action. After an opening day loss to Slovakia, Canada has reeled off four consecutive victories in convincing fashion. The U.S. women’s team stormed back to beat Italy 2-1 in their opener and have played with confidence since that time.
Elysia Desmer got Canada going just 5:47 in with a bullet to the top shelf and Canada was off and running. Desmer got loose down the right side minutes later and tried to go upstairs but Bekkering would have none of it. Foley from the U.S. had a wide open net at the 10 minute mark but the shot sailed over the crossbar, and the U.S. kept pressing.
Canada’s leading scorer Rattray got in on a clear breakaway midway through the second but couldn’t manage to beat Bekkering. After a penalty early in the 3rd, Canada found itself down two and the U.S. wasted no time tying the game when Kelly Foley put home a rebound in front. After another penalty to the U.S., they were back on another 5-3 but Canada managed to pull through this time and kill it off. Canada went back up by one when Amanda Kean scored at the 7:09 mark of the 3rd. The U.S. women again battled back and tied it with less than five minutes to go! Taylor Steadman got the ball in front and put home what looked like a deflected shot. And with less than a minute to go the U.S. got possession in deep and it was Rebecca Dobson playing heroine when she fired a one timer past the Canadian keeper.
This game will be remembered for years based on circumstance, as the U.S. women will now await either Slovakia or the Czech women in the other semi-final being played tonight.