Rebecca Johnston scored twice, Canada’s national women’s team beats Flames

CALGARY – Rebecca Johnston scored twice as Canada’s national women’s hockey team earned a 5-2 win over the Calgary Flames in NWT Midget Series action on Tuesday night.

Jayna Hefford, Jennifer Wakefield and Sarah Vaillancourt also scored for Canada.

Carter Page and Brandon Long replied for the Flames.

It was Canada’s sixth win in eight games in its series against Alberta Midget Hockey League teams, which have male players aged 15-17. The midget teams have agreed not to bodycheck against the Canadians, as that constitutes a penalty in women’s hockey.

The games count in the AMHL standings for the midget teams.

Hefford opened the scoring 54 seconds into the game, surprising Calgary goaltender Cole Cheveldave with a wraparound.

Hard work led to Canada’s second goal. Cherie Piper dug the puck out of the corner and threw it in front to Johnston, who gave Canada a two-goal lead after 20 minutes.

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Canada went up 3-0 in the second period when Wakefield’s shot from the slot went up and over Cheveldave. Page got one back for Calgary less than a minute later.

Vaillancourt restored Canada’s three-goal lead at the 16:33 mark of the second period, picking off an errant pass before sliding the puck through Cheveldave’s pads.

Johnston made it 5-1 before the end of the period, knocking home a Meghan Mikkelson rebound on the power play.

Long rounded out the scoring late in the third for the Flames, who entered the game leading the AMHL’s Chrysler Division with a 4-1-3 record.

Kim St-Pierre made 19 saves for Canada, while Cheveldave stopped 26 shots for Calgary.

Canada departs Wednesday morning for Sweden, where it will train in preparation for the 2009 Four Nations Cup.