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UMD women's hockey: Bell, Larocque, Rooney will battle for Olympic gold as USA, Canada advance

Ashton Bell, Jocelyne Larocque and Canada will take on Maddie Rooney and the United States for gold on Wednesday night at the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing. Meanwhile, Lara Stalder and Switzerland will square off with Eveliina Makinen and Finland for Olympic bronze Wednesday morning.

Ice Hockey - Women's Prelim. Round - Group A - United States v Canada
Maddie Rooney of the United States looks on during play during the 2022 Olympics at Wukesong Sports Centre in Beijing, China on February 8, 2022.
BRIAN SNYDER/REUTERS

BEIJING — Two former Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs will be going for a second Olympic gold medal while a current captain will be seeking her first when the United States and Canada meet in the final of the Olympic women’s hockey tournament at 10:10 p.m. (CT) Wednesday.

United States goaltender Maddie Rooney and Canadian defensemen Jocelyne Larocque and Ashton Bell clinched Olympic medals Monday with semifinal victories. The U.S. beat Finland 4-1 and Canada raced by Switzerland 10-3.

Ice Hockey - Women's Play-offs Semifinals - Canada v Switzerland
Jocelyne Larocque of Canada in action with Lara Christen of Switzerland during the 2022 Olympics at Wukesong Sports Centre in Beijing, China on February 14, 2022.
JONATHAN ERNST/REUTERS

Larocque, who helped UMD win its last national championship in 2010, is already a two-time Olympic medalist, having won gold in 2014 in Sochi, Russia, and silver in 2018 in Pyeongchang, South Korea, with Canada. Rooney, who has served as the backup to former Wisconsin Badger Alex Cavallini in the quarterfinals and semifinals, backstopped the U.S. to gold as the starter in Pyeongchang.

Bell, a fifth-year senior who captained UMD to the Frozen Four last season, is looking to make her first Olympic medal a gold medal after posting a goal and four assists in five games at the 2022 Winter Games thus far.

Both Bell and Larocque were kept off the scoresheet Monday in Canada’s dominating Olympic semifinal win over Switzerland. Former Bulldog Lara Stalder, the Swiss captain, was not. She had two goals and an assist and tried to bring her team back from an early 5-0 deficit by scoring on the power play late in the first and setting up a goal early in the second to bring Switzerland within three, but two Canadian goals in 11 seconds in the second period squashed that comeback attempt.

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Ice Hockey - Women's Play-offs Semifinals - Canada v Switzerland
Lara Stalder of Switzerland celebrates scoring their first goal against Canada in the semifinals of the 2022 Olympics at Wukesong Sports Centre in Beijing, China on February 14, 2022.
Annegret Hilse / Reuters

Stalder has five goals and four assists in Beijing. She is seeking her second Olympic medal with Switzerland when they take on Finland at 5:30 a.m. Wednesday in the bronze-medal game. Stalder was a freshman at UMD when she won bronze with Switzerland in 2014 in Sochi. The Swiss finished fifth in 2018.

Former UMD goalie Eveliina Makinen, Finland’s third-string goaltender who has yet to play in three Olympics, is also seeking her second bronze medal after winning her first in 2018.

Upcoming games for Bulldogs in Beijing

All times Central

TUESDAY

Men’s Quarterfinals

United States (Noah Cates) vs. Germany-Slovakia winner, 10:10 p.m.

WEDNESDAY

Women’s Bronze Medal Game

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Switzerland (Lara Stalder) vs. Finland (Eveliina Makinen), 5:30 a.m.

Women’s Gold Medal Game

Canada (Ashton Bell, Jocelyne Larocque) vs. United States (Maddie Rooney), 10:10 p.m.

MORE BULLDOGS OLYMPIC COVERAGE:
The UMD women's program, with five players in the semifinals, is guaranteed a gold medalist at the Winter Games while Bulldogs men's captain Noah Cates and the Americans are the top seed in the men's quarterfinals.

Co-host of the Bulldog Insider Podcast and college hockey reporter for the Duluth News Tribune and The Rink Live covering the Minnesota Duluth men's and women's hockey programs.
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