Erin Ambrose and Amy Potomak cut from Canadian Olympic team

Canada makes the first two of five cuts as the team gets closer to their final roster

With the 2018 Winter Olympics getting closer, Hockey Canada has made two of their five cuts needed to get to their final roster.

The team released defender Erin Ambrose and forward Amy Potomak from the roster on Monday night.

The two cuts are not completely unexpected as Canada cuts down their roster.  Ambrose was always going to be in a battle with Renata Fast, Micah Zandee-Hart and Brigette Lacquette for the final spots on the blue line, and now those three will battle to stay on the squad.

Ambrose, like the rest of her teammates, had a tough game against Team USA in Quebec City in their 5-2 loss. She played in three games at the 4 Nations Cup in Tampa and had two assists, both in Canada’s 9-0 win over Sweden. She was scratched for the gold medal game.

“I would like to thank Hockey Canada for the opportunity to be part of centralization over the last couple of months,” she said in a press release. “It has been an incredible experience to be part of this journey. I wish my teammates nothing but the best as they move forward and will be cheering for them every step of the way.”

She will presumably join the CWHL’s Toronto Furies for the remainder of the season, although her first game will have to wait; the team is currently in China and has two more games this week. She would likely play December 3 when the Furies host Les Canadiennes.

Potomak, who only turned 18 in June, was the youngest player at Canada’s camp. She played in one game at the 4 Nations Cup, the round-robin loss to the United States. She did, however, play in the first two games of the exhibition series in Quebec City and Boston, but did not register a point.

She plays her NCAA hockey at the University of Minnesota and it remains to be seen whether she will re-join her team for the remainder of the season. It’s likely that she would not return until next semester at the earliest. She says she’s still deciding on her next steps.

“I would like to thank Hockey Canada and my teammates who have pushed me to become a better person and player, and have supported me through centralization. I also want to thank the fans for their support throughout my journey,” she said in a statement. “I am disappointed right now but I understand it's not my time and this will make me better moving forward. I'm going to take some time and decide what my next steps are. I wish Team Canada the best of luck moving forward.”

Canada now has 26 players remaining at camp. They currently have eight defenders and 15 forwards, which they will likely cut down to seven and 13. They also have three goaltenders on the roster, but have brought up both Erica Howe and Emerance Maschmeyer with the status of Shannon Szabados up in the air.