JASON LA ROSE
KAMLOOPS, B.C. – Rebecca Johnston (Sudbury, Ont./Calgary, CWHL) scored a hat trick in her 100th international game with Canada’s National Women’s Team, leading the Canadians to a 9-0 win over Sweden in their final pre-tournament game ahead of the 2016 IIHF Women’s World Championship on Saturday night.
Canada finished with two wins and an overtime loss in its three exhibition contests, which included two games against the Okanagan Hockey Academy Selects during camp in Penticton earlier in the week.
Natalie Spooner (Scarborough, Ont./Toronto, CWHL) was the high scorer, scoring twice and adding two assists, and Brigette Lacquette (Mallard, Man./Calgary, CWHL) and Jill Saulnier (Halifax, N.S./Calgary, CWHL) chipped in with three assists each.
Emerance Maschmeyer (Bruderheim, Alta./Harvard University, ECAC) earned the shutout, making 16 saves.
Johnston didn’t waste any time opening the scoring, finishing off a feed from Saulnier just 3:20 in, and Jennifer Wakefield (Pickering, Ont./Linköping HC, SWE) kept on a 2-on-1 and snapped a shot past Swedish goaltender Minatsu Murase just 64 seconds later for a 2-0 lead.
Brianne Jenner (Oakville, Ont./Calgary, CWHL) set up Johnston for her second of the period at 14:25, and Halli Krzyzaniak (Neepawa, Man./University of North Dakota, WCHA) recorded her first national team goal late in the opening frame, bouncing a shot in off Murase’s glove to push the advantage to 4-0 after 20 minutes.
The Canadians outshot Sweden 26-5 in the first period, and finished with a 52-16 advantage overall.
Spooner led the scoring in the second period, recording both her goals in the stanza, sandwiched around Johnston’s hat trick goal at 9:48; after Saulnier drove hard to the Swedish net, Jenner picked up a loose puck and found Johnston in the slot.
Murase gave up Spooner’s first goal before giving way to Sara Grahn; Murase finished with 27 saves on 32 shots in her 28 minutes of work, while Grahn stopped 16 of 20 the rest of the way.
Meghan Agosta (Ruthven, Ont.) and Wakefield, with her second of the game, capped the scoring with goals 1:23 apart early in the third period.
The Canadians open the world championship Monday night against the United States (10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT, TSN) in the marquee match-up of the preliminary round at the Sandman Centre.