The puck drops on Game 2 of the five-game Rivalry Series tonight at Avenir Centre in Moncton, NB. It is the second of the two Rivalry Series games in December, with the other three taking place in February 2020.
When: Tuesday, Dec., 17, 2019 at 6:30 p.m. ET
Where: Avenir Centre in Moncton, NB
How: NHL Network and TSN (Canada)
USA leads, 1-0.
On Saturday, in Hartford, Conn. Canada stuck first but then let USA score four straight to take the first game of the series 4-1.
After dropping both games in Pittsburgh in November, Team USA brought out a new roster for the two December games. Numerous college players made their debut Saturday evening. Two of those newcomers picked up their first senior team points — Abby Roque scored the third US goal of the night with Britta Curl getting the primary assist. Goaltender Alex Cavallini (neé Rigsby) stood on her head stopping 32 of 33 shots she saw.
Canada’s lone goal was scored by Victoria Bach on the power play, their only extra skater conversion of the five attempts they had.
Who to Watch
USA’s net will be a spot to watch tonight. After Cavallini’s great game Saturday, will she get the start again or will one of the two college goaltenders get a chance? Maddie Rooney has Team USA experience from backstopping the team to an Olympic gold in 2018 and two shutouts at 2019 Worlds. But newcomer Aerin Frankel out of Northeastern is a great option to get reps in during a low-pressure game, despite not having as much experience against players of this caliber.
The forwards seemed to meshing well Saturday, a different look than in Pittsburgh where the team seemed out of sorts. Look for Alex Carpenter to continue prove that she’s supposed to be on the team, and Annie Pankowski to do her thing as well.
On the Canadian side, I’d watch for Victoria Bach to continue to excel in a role where she’s getting top line minutes and special teams time. She’s a special player who’s only just starting to show what she can do. Staying out of the box will also be a big point for Canada as they let in two power play goals — the tying and go-ahead tallies. These proved to be difference makers in the game.
The goaltending situation for Team Canada is also one to watch. Geneviève Lacasse started Saturday but with Ann-Renée Desbiens and Emerance Maschmeyer on call, Canada has a plethora of strong options to even the Rivalry Series at one game a piece.