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USA vs. Canada, Olympic women's hockey 2018: Live updates and highlights

First period: USA 0, Canada 0

USA 0, Canada 0: A tough break for the Americans as defenseman Lee Stecklein was called for interference late in the period. Canada was unable to score during the first minute-plus of its power play, however, so the second period will begin with another 39 seconds of 5-on-4 action.

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It’s been a tight game so far with the U.S. leading in shots, 14-12. If those 20 minutes were any indication, the rest of this game is going to be a thriller.

USA 0, Canada 0: A potential first goal by Canada didn’t count because the whistle was blown before the puck went into the net. There was a Canadian player in the crease, which automatically initiates a whistle from the refs in international hockey. It’s still 0-0 with a few minutes left in the first period.

USA 0, Canada 0: The Americans drew their first power play of the game on a penalty by Meghan Agosta. They had one sequence where a loose puck in front of the net presented some opportunity, but Canada also recorded two shorthanded shots on goal during the two minutes, so it’s not exactly the start Team USA was looking for with the 5-on-4 advantage.

Also, Team USA’s Gigi Marvin absolutely decked a referee, although thankfully she got right back up afterwards.

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USA 0, Canada 0: A wild scramble created by a strong drive to the net by Meghan Agosta gave Canada a chance to score, but the referee blew the play dead when the puck couldn’t be located. The game remains scoreless through nine minutes of action in the first period.

USA 0, Canada 0: Hilary Knight got the first big scoring chance of the game on a breakaway resulting from a bad line change by the Canadian defense. Kendall Coyne smartly pushed the puck up the ice to Knight, which forced goalie Genevieve Lacasse to make her first tough save of the game.

USA 0, Canada 0: Both teams are playing a physical game out of the gate to try to set the tone. There’s been just one shot on goal by either team in the first three minutes as much of the action swings within the neutral zone.

USA 0, Canada 0: And we’re off in Pyeongchang!

Before the game

There’s no gold medal on the line, but the intensity will be increased all the same as Team USA faces Canada in the Olympic women’s hockey tournament Wednesday night. This is one of the marquee hockey games in Pyeongchang, so you’ll want to tune in on NBCSN or online starting at 10:10 p.m. ET.

The stakes will be relatively low for this matchup beyond the implications of a gold-medal game preview. The two teams have already clinched the top two spots in Group A, so they’re guaranteed byes to the semifinals of the playoff round. The winner will earn the top seed, but that hardly matters given the inevitability of a rematch for gold.

Still, this is USA-Canada hockey in the Olympics. That alone makes it a matchup of immense importance for everyone involved.

Both teams enter this game with unbeaten records through two games. The Americans are coming off a 5-0 win over Olympic Athletes from Russia where forward Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson set the Olympic record by scoring two goals in just six seconds. That came after a 3-1 win over Finland to open the tournament.

Canada also topped the Russian team, 5-0, while earning a 4-1 win over Finland. There’s little doubt at this point about which two teams will likely play in the gold-medal game on Feb. 24.

The pressure won’t be quite as high Wednesday, but expect a similar intensity level for one of the most important games of these players’ lives. USA-Canada women’s hockey is now one of the best rivalries in international sports, and you’ll definitely want to make sure not to miss it.

How to watch USA vs. Canada, 2018 Olympic women’s hockey

Time: 10:10 p.m. ET

Where: Kwandong Hockey Centre, Gangneung, South Korea

TV: NBCSN

Live stream: NBC Olympics

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