Canada defeated Team USA 2-1 in the IIHF women's world championship final on Sunday in Denmark, as hockey's greatest rivalry added another thrilling chapter.
Goalie Ann-Renee Desbiens made 19 saves in the win, including some in the final moments of the third period, while forward Brianne Jenner scored two goals in 1:24 during the second period.
"Sometimes you have to squeak it out at the end and rely on goaltending and blocked shots. We found a way to get it done," Jenner said after the game.
Canada now has 12 women's worlds gold medals to the Americans' nine. Either the U.S. or Canada has won gold in women's worlds every tournament since the event began in 1990. They've met each other in every tournament final save for 2019, when the U.S. defeated Finland for gold.
Team USA had won eight of the past 10 meetings with Canada at worlds and had won gold in five of the past six tournaments. Canada has now won gold in back-to-back IIHF world championships, to go along with their gold medal win over the Americans at the Beijing Olympics earlier this year.
"I think as a group, we came out and found a different way to win the championship,'' Canada captain Marie-Philip Poulin said. "We're all aware we weren't producing the numbers at the Olympics, but tonight we did it by blocking shots, killing penalties, the power play. We had to find other ways to win, and Ann-Renee made a couple of saves to get the win.''
Sunday's game had a scoreless first period and an uncharacteristically low number of shots between the teams. But Team Canada roared to life in the second period thanks to Jenner, who was the MVP at the Beijing Olympics. Jenner collected a pass from Poulin and beat U.S. goalie Nicole Hensley at 9:30 of the second period for the 1-0 lead.
The Americans handed Canada even more momentum when Hannah Brandt went off for boarding just 26 seconds later. Jenner scored her second of the game on the ensuing power play to give Canada the 2-0 advantage. But the U.S. scored a critical goal with 21 seconds remaining in the second period, as Abby Roque banged in a perfect cross-crease pass from Amanda Kessel on the power play.
The Americans pushed in the third period, including a frantic final two minutes with Hensley pulled. But Desbiens made big saves while Poulin had a critical blocked shot late in the game to preserve the win.
The loss was Team USA's first at the 2022 world championships, having gone undefeated in the preliminary round (outscoring their four opponents 30-3, including a 5-2 win over Canada) and playoffs.
"Not the result we deserved," U.S. captain Kendall Coyne Schofield said. "A lot to be proud of, a lot to learn, a lot to build on to move forward as a group.''
The 2023 women's championship will be held in Canada in a city yet to be announced, followed by the U.S. hosting it in 2024.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.