action:article | category:SPORTS26 | adString:SPORTS26 | zoneID:40

Home » Sports » Olympics

February 08. 2014 8:21PM

Knight lifts U.S. women to opening hockey win


Hilary Knight of the U.S. celebrates her goal against Finland with teammate Amanda Kessel during their women's preliminary round hockey game at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games. (REUTERS/Grigory Dukor)

SOCHI, Russia - It took less than a minute for Hilary Knight to announce her presence in Sochi.

The veteran forward who formerly lived in Hanover, N.H., scored 53 seconds into Team USA's inaugural 2014 Olympics hockey game, helping teammates shake off pre-tourney jitters and setting a tone of dominance that players hope to maintain through the gold-medal game.

"It's a nice piece of history to have for myself," Knight said.

Knight also had an assist for teammate Alex Carpenter and led the team in shots on goal as USA beat Finland 3-1.

She came out early, snagging a loose puck and beating a path toward the Finland net.

"Our eyes lit up," recalled forward Kelli Stack. "She just flared it low-blocker. I think the puck was in the net before Noora (Raty, the Finland goalie) even moved."

The goal wasn't unexpected from Knight, a veteran forward for the U.S. women's hockey team who played four years ago in Vancouver. In all, Knight had eight shots on goal, more than any other player.

"She had an unbelievable year, and I think she's going to have a great tournament," said USA goalie Jessie Vetter.

It was Knight's first shot that set the tone, and it came against one of the world's top goalies. "It was a nightmare start for me and my team, but we got over it real quick," said Raty, of Finland. Her coach, Mika Pieniniemi, called the goal "unlucky."

"She has probably the best shot in women's hockey. She shoots like a guy," Stack said. "It's unbelievable to have someone on the team who can pretty much score at will for us."

USA Coach Katey Stone, who played at the University of New Hampshire, said the goal helped "take the edge off the anxiety" for the team. The United States lost to Finland 3-1 in Lake Placid, N.Y., in November.

Finland's Mira Jalosuo wants a rematch in the semifinals. "I feel confident we can beat them," she said.


  • With revenues topping $9B and amid constant scandals, should the NFL lose its tax exempt status?
  • Yes
  • 91%
  • No
  • 9%
  • Total Votes: 1361
 NH Sports Angle more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

UNH's Thompson takes leave of absence

Toronto Maple Leafs James van Riemsdyk still has plenty of room to grow after breakout season

Keene State hoops program mourns death of former teammate killed on duty

Keene State College alumnus killed in NYPD van crash on way to providing security for climate change march

Grantland.com: 15 Questions for San Antonio's Matt Bonner

Former KSC basketball player killed months after joining NYC police in patrol van crash

Speed and thrills at Kingston hydroplane races

NHMS, Miller Lite extend deal for another 3 years

NASCAR: Who the Vegas wise guys like heading into Loudon

Goalie Danny Tirone to enroll at UNH for second semester after star's suspension for domestic violence

'Smoke' blows into New Hampshire with the law in his rear-view mirror

Man found unconscious at Winchester Speedpark Saturday

Too young to drive, but old enough for NHMS

Police examine speed, possible horseplay in golf cart fatality

Mass. man, 27, dies in golf cart accident at The Links at Outlook

Hanover's Sarah Groff competes in the women's triathlon final during the 2012 London Olympic Games.

Hanover Olympian in spotlight at Las Vegas Super Sprint

FHL makes it official, team planned for Berlin will play in North Adams, Mass. instead

Can NH soccer star Charlie Davies make a comeback?

Inside NIKEs secret sports lab; born in Exeter, now located in Oregon.

Concord Monitor decries gender pay gap in professional tennis

FHL franchise slated for Berlin may go to North Adams, Mass. instead

Eagles' Kelly says he learned his offense by studying defense while at UNH

Former Concord area youth baseball coach sentenced to 30 more years in prison

Maine boxer Brandon Berry making Fight to Educate history

Hudson family, classmates working to keep Alvirne soccer standout Raul Stedile in U.S.

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

    SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

    ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!