U.S. Women's Hockey Team Earns Silver Medal at 2022 Winter Olympics with 3-2 Defeat to Canada

Team USA played rivals Team Canada in the gold medal match of the 2022 Winter Olympics

USA's Jessica Compher (L) an Canada's Emma Maltais

The U.S. women's hockey team earned a silver medal after falling short in the gold medal match against Canada at the 2022 Winter Olympics.

After losing to Team USA in 2018,Canadasecured Olympic gold against their longtime rivals with a 3-2 victory late Wednesday (Eastern).

The team scored back-to-back goals early into the first period, while the U.S. struggled against Canada's overpowering defense. Marie-Philip Poulin of Canada scored her second goal of the match halfway through the second period, which gave Canada a 3-0 lead.

Hilary Knight, second all-time in points scored by an American, scored the first goal for Team USA nearly 17 minutes into the second period, cutting the deficit to two.

While Team USA hoped to mount a comeback in the third period, they were only able to score their second, and final, point with 12.5 seconds left in the game.

Team USA's women's hockey team has medaled in every Olympics since the sport was first introduced as an event at the 1998 Olympics in Nagano, with the Americans taking the inaugural gold. Since then, they've won three silvers, a bronze, and an additional gold in PyeongChang 2018, over Canada.

Kelly Pannek (L) and USA's goaltender Alexandria Cavallini defend an attacking play by Canada's Melodie Daoust

In the playoffs round, Team USA first defeated the Czech Republic to advance to the semifinals, where they were triumphant over Finland.

Canada, meanwhile, defeated Sweden, then Switzerland, to make it to the gold medal match. Finland and Switzerland faced off for the bronze medal, with the former country taking bronze for the third time in the last four Games.

Ahead of the final, U.S. captain Kendall Coyne Schofield talked to reporters about the team's Olympic journey, saying, "These are the games that we live for," Fox News reported.

"Everyone's been so resilient through the pandemic with the ups and downs, the cancellations, postponements and finding ways to train, and it's for this moment," she added. "We're going to empty the tanks, and this is what we came here to do."

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Earlier on Wednesday (Eastern), the U.S. men's hockey team lost to Slovakia, 3-2, in the quarterfinal and were knocked out of the Games. Current NHL players did not participate in this Games due to what would have been a season disruption, so the U.S. team was made of college athletes.

To learn more about Team USA, visit TeamUSA.org. Watch the Winter Olympics, now, and the Paralympics, beginning March 4, on NBC.

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