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Johnston, Canada go for Olympic hockey gold at noon

By: Sudbury Northern Life Staff

 | Feb 19, 2014 - 1:55 PM |
Rebecca Johnston, left, and Team Canada celebrate a 3-0 win over Finland on Feb. 10. Johnston's in the hunt for a second consecutive gold medal in hockey Thursday at noon when the women's team plays the U.S. in the final at the Sochi Olympic Games. File photo.

Rebecca Johnston, left, and Team Canada celebrate a 3-0 win over Finland on Feb. 10. Johnston's in the hunt for a second consecutive gold medal in hockey Thursday at noon when the women's team plays the U.S. in the final at the Sochi Olympic Games. File photo.

Will join Duhamel as Sudbury medallists in Sochi

The Sochi Games may be down to its final few days, but for one Olympian from Sudbury, there's still one big game ahead.

At noon today, Rebecca Johnston goes for her second gold medal in as many Games as a member of the Canadian Women's Hockey team. They face the U.S., their arch rivals whom Canada has bested in each of the last three Olympics, in a game beginning at noon.

Johnston, a forward, is tied for second in team scoring with four points, a point behind team leader Hayley Wickenheiser. Johnston had a goal and two assists in the Games opener, a 5-0 win over Switzerland, and added another goal in the team's 3-0 win over Finland. She's tied with Meghan Agosta-Marciano and Natalie Spooner in the team scoring race.

The 24-year-old has been active on twitter (@RJohnst16 ) during the Games, tweeting photos of herself and teammates as they take in other sports or head to and from practice.

“My favourite part of pracky (practice),” she wrote Feb. 17, and tweeted a picture of her and and teammate Charline Labonte riding a golf cart on her way to the rink.

On Feb. 15, she tweeted a picture of her and her mom Colleen holding the banner sent from Sudbury and signed by hundreds of well-wishers.

“Thank you Sudbury for all the support as I continue my journey in Sochi!” Johnston wrote.

The Cornell graduate was the leading scorer in the 2011-2012 campaign, her last before graduating, and finished her career at No. 5 on Cornell’s all-time scoring list. According to the Cornell Sun online newspaper, Johnston was also named ECAC Hockey Player of the Year, Ivy League Player of the Year, a Patty Kazmaier finalist and a First Team All-American in her final year at school.

She and her Team Canada mates are guaranteed a silver medal but are going for another gold on Thursday.

She'll join Meagan Duhamel as Sudburians who won a medal at Sochi. Duhamel and pairs skating partner Eric Radford won silver as part of the team figure skating event.

“Still having a great time in Sochi!!!” Duhamel (@mhjd_85) tweeted Feb. 16. “Even saw skeleton and ski jumping! Back to training tomorrow. Worlds is coming!”

The pair finished their Olympics on Feb. 12, but on Wednesday tweeted a picture of themselves and much of the figure skating team cheering Canada on at the men's curling semifinal against China. She also tweeted a link to a video of her and Radford practising their routine – bit.ly/1csMEjo.

Devon Kershaw, Sudbury's cross-country skiing entry at the Olympics, competed today along with partner Alex HARVEY in the first heat of the Men's Team Spring Classic semifinal, but failed to qualify for the final. Kershaw finished 56th in the Men's Free Sprint on Feb. 11, and 35th in the Men's 15K Classic on Feb. 14.

Kershaw, who announced Feb. 3 he was taking break from twitter until after the games, still has the 50K Men's Mass Start Classic, which goes Feb. 23, the final day of the Games.

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