There are 10 Wisconsin players in tonight's USA-Canada gold medal game
The biggest event in women's hockey is tonight as Team USA goes against Canada in the gold medal game (10:10 p.m. on NBC Sports Network).
If this sounds familiar to you, that's because it is. This will be the fifth matchup between the two teams in six gold medal games, with the only other final being Canada vs. Sweden in the 2006 Turin games.
The U.S. vs Canada gold medal contest is not only a familiar matchup, but it also features a lot of familiar faces. This year, there are five athletes from each team with ties to the state (and especially the University) of Wisconsin.
Here's who local fans should look out for tonight:
Brianna Decker: The 26-year-old Dousman native is one of the most decorated athletes on the squad. Decker was a Second Team All-American at Wisconsin, multiple-time First Team All-WCHA, she won the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award (the nation's top female college ice hockey player) in 2012 and won a silver medal in the 2014 Sochi games. In those Sochi games she recorded two goals and four assists in five total games.
Meghan Duggan: Duggan is another highly decorated former Badger, having won three national titles and a runner-up finish during her time at UW. She won the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award the year before Decker won in 2011. The 30-year-old has won two silver medals in 2010 and 2014, contributing one goal and one assist in five total games while serving as the team captain in the 2014 Sochi games. Duggan is also the captain for the 2018 PyeongChang games.
Amanda Kessel: Unlike the previous two athletes, Kessel did not attend UW, but she grew up in Madison. The 26-year-old was also a part of that 2014 silver medal team, accumulating 3 goals and 3 assists in those five games.
Hilary Knight: One of the more popular players on Team USA, Knight is another accomplished Badger. She won two national championships at UW and was a top-10 finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award in three different seasons. The 28-year-old forward was on both the 2010 and 2014 silver-medal teams, and found success in both Olympic games. She had the third most assists (7) in the 2010 tournament, and added three goals and three assists in the 2014 tournament.
Alex Rigsby: Similar to Decker, Rigsby has the Wisconsin hometown and college connection. The 26-year-old Delafield native won one national title at UW, was a First Team All-American, led the nation in saves her sophomore year and, according to the Team USA website, was the first goalie in UW program history to be named captain. This will be Rigsby's first Olympics.
Emily Clark: Like many, Clark has found success at UW. She has reached the Frozen Four in her first three seasons in Madison, including the National Championship game last season. This will be the 22-year-old senior's first Olympics.
Ann-Renee Desbiens: The 23-year-old Wisconsin grad is the most recent winner of the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award, and she is the first goalie to win the award since fellow Badger alum Jessie Vetter won in 2009. Desbiens holds the NCAA record for both men and women with 56 career shutouts, was a top three finalist for the Kazmaier award in 2016 and led the nation in shutouts, wins, GAA and save percentage in her award-winning 2017 campaign.
Meaghan Mikkelson: Mikkelson is considered one of the veterans of Team Canada, having already won two gold medals in 2010 and 2014. The highly accomplished 33-year-old from Alberta also won two national championships at Wisconsin. She was a top ten finalist for the Kazmaier Award her senior year. as well.
Sarah Nurse: This will be Nurse's first Olympics after finding success with Canada's various national teams. The 23-year-old made multiple Frozen Fours while attending Wisconsin, and she has a unique milestone to her name: According to UW athletics, Nurse became the first Badger in program history to record a hat trick against the Minnesota Golden Gophers in December 2016.
Blayre Turnbull: Turnbull showed great promise in her four years at Wisconsin. She finished her freshman year with a rookie of the year award, and was named captain of the Badgers her senior year. This will be the 24 year old's first Olympics.
For a full guide to watching the PyeongChang Winter Olympics on TV, click here.
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