Audrey Wethington (8) of the U.S. skates the puck around Canada’s goal during the second period of Wednesday’s game. Also pictured are Americans are Kiara Zanon (25) and Lacey Eden (22) and Canadians Nicole Gosling (9) and Ashley Messier.
(Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

LAKE PLACID — Women’s national hockey teams from the United States and Canada split on the opening night of their three-game series taking place at the Olympic Center in Lake Placid this week.

The rivals kicked off their series Wednesday, and Canada picked up the first victory, edging the United States 5-4 in a contest between each nation’s under-18 women’s select team. The under-22 matchup followed and saw the U.S. prevail 4-3 in overtime.

The Americans found themselves playing catch up for most of their U18 game after Canada jumped out to a 3-1 lead with less than 10 minutes gone in the opening period. Canada held a two-goal edge three times in the contest but the U.S. was able to cut that gap to single goals each time before finally coming up short.

Danielle Burgen of Chisago Lakes, Minnesota, and Kathryn Davis of Meridian, Idaho paced the American U18 team. Davis found the back of the net twice in the loss and Burgen scored once and recorded a pair of assists.

The U.S. got the jump in the game, getting a power-play tally by Davis 2:33 into the opening period. Canada then stormed back. Sarah Wozniewicz deadlocked the score 1-1 with a power-play goal at the 3:55 mark, and Sarah Thompson and Tamara Giaquinto buried pucks within a span of 53 seconds to put their team on top 3-1 with 9:03 gone in the game.

Danielle Burgen carries the puck across the blue line for the United States U18 team during the second period of Wednesday’s matchup against Canada at the Olympic Center in Lake Placid.
(Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)

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The teams then traded tallies the rest of the way. Kiara Zanon netted the second U.S. goal, scoring at the 12:28 mark of the opening period to send the teams into the first intermission with Canada on top 3-2.

Each team scored a goal apiece in the second and third stanzas, with Aly McLeod netting both goals for Canada and Burgen answering each time for the U.S. McLeod lifted the Canadians to a 4-2 edge at the 14:35 mark of the second, and Burgen cut the deficit to 4-3 with her first of the night at the 16:41 mark.

Canada regained its two-goal advantage on McLeod’s second goal 7:15 into the final period. Burgen rounded out the scoring when she found the back of the net with 1:18 remaining in the game.

Both teams put 24 shots on goal. Kayle Osborne earned the win between the pipes for Canada and Skylar Vetter, of Lakeville, Minnesota, took the loss in goal for the U.S.

A two-goal cushion in the third period didn’t hold up for the U.S. U22 team, but it got the Americans into overtime, where they came up with the game-winner when Hannah Bilka scored a power-play goal in sudden death to lift the U.S. to victory.

The U.S. held a 3-1 edge well into the third period, but Canada rallied with two goals during the final 5:42 of regulation to force overtime.

Each team scored once in the first period. Grace Zumwinkle, of Excelsior, Minnesota, gave the U.S. the lead on a power-play tally 8:39 into the game, and Clair Thompson answered for Canada, scoring an even-strength goal at the 11:42 mark to send the game into the first intermission deadlocked at 1-1.

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Taylor Heise netted the lone goal in the second period. The forward from Lake City, Minnesota scored with just 1:42 gone in the period. Natalie Snodgrass, from Eagan, Minnesota, upped the American’s advantage to 3-1 on a goal 8:59 into the third period.

The rest of the stanza belonged to Canada, as Sophie Shirley scored at the 14:18 mark and Kristin O’Neill buried the equalizer at with 1:27 remaining in regulation to force overtime.

Bilka, who hails from Coppell, Texas, then became the hero of the night, scoring 4:01 into the extra-period to give the U.S. the 4-3 win. Cayla Barnes and Sydney Brodt assisted on the game-winner.

Canada finished with a 31-26 advantage in shots on goal.

Emma Polusny made 28 saves in goal for the U.S. and Kendra Woodland recorded 26 saves in the nets for Canada.

The rivalry series continues at the 1980 Herb Brooks Arena with games Thursday and Saturday. Each doubleheader kicks off with the U18 matchups starting at 4 p.m., with the U22 games slated to follow at 7 p.m.