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MX News Update 2024


PWHL Playoffs: Toronto defeated Minnesota 4-0

Abdulhamid Ibrahim, The Canadian Press

Published Wednesday, May 8, 2024 9:38 PM EDT

Blayre Turnbull scored two goals to lead Toronto to a 4-0 victory over Minnesota on Wednesday in the Professional Women’s Hockey League’s first-ever playoff game.

Natalie Spooner, with the opening goal and one assist, and Emma Maltais also scored for top-seeded Toronto in front of 8,473 fans at Coca-Cola Coliseum.

Kristen Campbell posted a 26-save shutout. Nicole Hensley stopped 15 shots for fourth-seeded Minnesota.

Game 2 in the best-of-five semi-final is scheduled for Friday in Toronto.

The hosts entered the winners of four straight games to close out the regular season, including a 4-1 win over Minnesota last Wednesday.

Toronto went 2-1-0-1 against Minnesota in the regular season. Minnesota earned a 3-1 road victory on January 10.

Toronto had its first few decent scoring opportunities early in the opening period. Brittany Howard nearly put one in on a blocked shot by Sarah Nurse and Alexa Vasko was stopped soon after on a one-timer from the slot.

Spooner opened the scoring at 9:47 of the first period, much to the delight of the deafening home crowd. The PWHL scoring champion took a pass from Hannah Miller and fired a wrister that went past Hensley’s glove via the top corner.

Maltais made it 2-0 after 55 seconds of the second period. The nurse caught the attention of two defenders approaching the slot and found a streaking Maltais who made it between Hensley’s pads with his backhand.

Turnbull came into action with 4:55 left in the middle frame. She iced the puck, sent it to Spooner, who returned it and Turnbull tapped it in.

Minnesota had a 17-11 advantage in shots after 40 minutes.

Spooner had a great opportunity to score her second goal of the match early in the third period, but was stopped by Hensley.

Turnbull scored her second of the match with 37.8 seconds left. She buried a rebound from a Miller miss at home.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 8, 2024.