Newspaper article The Canadian Press

U.S. Wins Controversial Women's Hockey Gold in 2-1 Shootout Win over Finland

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

U.S. Wins Controversial Women's Hockey Gold in 2-1 Shootout Win over Finland

Article excerpt

U.S. wins women's world title in a shootout

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ESPOO, Finland - The United States celebrated a women's world hockey title that the Finns thought was theirs Sunday.

The U.S. claimed gold at a fifth straight world championship beating host Finland 2-1 in a shootout.

The Americans were up 2-1 in the shootout when goalie Alex Rigsby stopped Susanna Tapani for the victory.

"We rely a lot on our goaltenders, and clearly Alex Rigsby showed up in a huge way that we knew she was capable of doing," U.S. forward Hilary Knight said.

Annie Pankowski both scored in regulation and the shootout. Amanda Kessel also scored a shootout goal and Rigsby had 26 saves.

Finland goaltender Noora Raty made 50 saves a day after posting 43 in a 4-2 semifinal win over Canada.

Finland's captain Jenni Hiirikoski, who was named MVP of the tournament, scored in the shootout. Tapani scored in regulation.

Playing in their first final, the Finns celebrated what they thought was a golden goal by Petra Nieminen at 11:33 of overtime.

The team and the sold-out Metro Areena convulsed in joy, but the goal was waived off after a review that lasted several minutes.

Hiirikoski had made contact with Rigsby as she passed in front of the net. Nieminen had a near-empty net at which to shoot.

Hiirikoski wasn't assessed a goaltender interference penalty, but Rigsby was given a tripping minor, which wrinkled many brows in the arena.

Finnish Ice Hockey Federation chief executive officer Matti Nurminen said the situation was discussed with the International Ice Hockey Federation.

"The referees on the ice had a different view on the situation than the video-goal judge," Nurminen said.

"Referees on the ice were giving a penalty to the goalie for tripping and they were allowing the goal.

"But when it goes to video review, the power and authority goes the video-goal judges. They saw it as goalie interference and made that decision. …

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