Hilary Knight scored a hat trick to lead the United States past Canada 6-3 in the 2023 IIHF Women’s World Championship in Brampton, Ontario. The loss ended Hockey Canada’s bid for a third consecutive gold medal in the annual tournament.
USA Hockey goaltender Aerin Frankel made 16 saves and was key, especially in the second period, where she made seven saves to keep her team in the game.
As was the case in the earlier group stage contest between these two fierce rivals, it was back and forth all night. Marie-Phillip Poulin opened the scoring less than 10 minutes into the first period on a five-on-three power play. She fired a one-timer from the top of the circle to open the scoring account for Canada.
With two minutes left in the first period, theU.S. responded. Abby Murphy, on an odd rush and beat Anne Renée Desbiens to knot the game at one. Brianne Jenner regained the lead for Canada with a powerful blast from the point six minutes into the second frame. The U.S. tied the game again four minutes later as Knight scored her first goal of the game.
Jenner scored her second of the game 30 seconds later to make it 3-2 for Canada. The response goal was the last of the middle frame.
In true fashion of the U.S. versus Canada rivalry, the game saw its third tie when less than six minutes into the final frame, Caroline Harvey scored with three minutes left on the clock with a shot from the point. It was chalk or so many likely thought. Another close game and possibly overtime (or more), as we have seen in seven previous Women’s World’s tournaments.
It would not come to pass.
Captain Hilary Knight scored her second goal of the game and her career 100th of the tournament to give the US the 4-3 lead. Canada wasn’t able to defend on a 3-5 penalty kill after consecutive penalties assessed to Jenner and Jamie Lee Rattray.
Knight scored an epic response goal on the 5-4 power play with less than three minutes remaining in regulation. U.S. defender Cayla Barnes sealed the deal with an empty net goal to claim a 6-3 victory.
The United States will claim bragging rights until next year when the field of ten ascends to Utica, New York, for the 2024 IIHF Women’s World Championships.