Ottawa aims for a third straight victory and first against Minnesota in Canada’s capital city


OTTAWA, ON (April 20, 2024) – The Professional Women’s Hockey League (PWHL) wraps up its busiest day of the regular-season with the third matchup of the day, a Saturday night battle between Ottawa and Minnesota, at 7:00 p.m. ET at The Arena at TD Place.




Fans in Canada can stream the game live on CBC Gem. The game is available to United States viewers live on Bally Sports North, the Bally Sports app on mobile and tablet devices (including iOS and Android), when authenticated using pay-TV credentials, and on Bally Sports+, the standalone streaming subscription service available from Bally Sports. The game will also be on Bally Sports Detroit/Florida/San Diego/Southeast/Southern California/West/Wisconsin channels, and streamed on the Women’s Sports Network and on the league’s YouTube channel. Kenzie Lalonde will have the play-by-play call alongside analyst Hanna Bunton.




Minnesota has three ways they can clinch a playoff spot including a win over Ottawa in regulation, a win over Ottawa in overtime or shootout combined with Boston earning two points or less against New York, or if they lose in overtime or a shootout to Ottawa but Boston also loses to New York in any fashion. Earlier in the day, Toronto became the first team to clinch a playoff berth with an overtime victory against Montréal.




A total of 17 players from these two teams represented their countries at the 2024 IIHF Women’s World Championship in Utica, NY. Ottawa’s Ashton Bell, Emily Clark, Brianne Jenner, and Emerance Maschmeyer all won gold with Canada. Ottawa’s Savannah Harmon and Hayley Scamurra earned silver medals with Team USA alongside Minnesota’s Kendall Coyne Schofield, Taylor Heise, Nicole Hensley, Kelly Pannek, and Grace Zumwinkle. Ottawa’s Sandra Abstreiter was named Best Goaltender of the tournament representing Germany, Akane Shiga was selected one of Japan’s Best Players, and Aneta Tejralová was one of Czechia’s best. Ottawa’s Tereza Vanišová, and Kateřina Mrázová were also on Czechia’s roster with Minnesota’s Denisa Křížová. A number of staff also had integral roles in the tournament including Ottawa coaches Carla MacLeod and Cassea Schols with Czechia. Team USA support staff included Minnesota athletic trainer Katie Homan and equipment manager Sis Paulsen.




Ottawa players will be officially welcomed home with red tulips given to them as part of their arena walk-ins at TD Place. For years, tulips have symbolized the arrival of spring in Canada’s capital. During the game, special acknowledgements will take place for fans to recognize the contributions of all players who proudly represented their countries on the world stage.




These were the two hottest teams in the PWHL before the International Break and they’re both in the thick of playoff races. Minnesota (8-4-3-5) had won a season-high five straight games to climb into second place in the overall standings with 35 points, and Ottawa (7-0-6-6) had won consecutive games for the first time all season to bring their point total to 27. Heading into Saturday, Minnesota was one point behind Toronto for first place and had a one-point lead over third place Montréal with those teams going head-to-head. Ottawa entered the day in fourth place, seven points behind Montréal and two up on fifth place Boston. While Ottawa’s streak might be small, the wins have been mighty. They posted their first shutout of the season Mar. 20 with a 3-0 road win over New York, then stopped Toronto’s season-high 11 game win streak with a 5-3 victory at home on Mar. 23. Minnesota’s five game streak was the longest behind Toronto and came to an end on Thursday. It was a heartbreaking 4-3 defeat to Montréal where they lost for the first time when leading after two periods by giving up two goals in the final three minutes. Minnesota is still one of the league’s top road teams with five wins and 14 points in nine games outside the State of Hockey. They have also not lost to Ottawa in four games this season, including two earlier meetings in this building. Ottawa emerges from the break with three straight games at The Arena at TD Place where they’ve won three times and have 12 points in nine games. The pucks could be flying on Saturday night as both teams average the most shots on net per game.




Minnesota leads the season series 10-2 in points over Ottawa with four wins in four games, but the results indicate a much tighter gap with four one-goal decisions. Minnesota won 3-2 in Ottawa on Jan. 17, then scored back-to-back 2-1 victories in a home-and-home series Feb. 14/17. Their last encounter was a 4-3 shootout on Mar. 5 at Xcel Energy Center led by a two-goal performance by Denisa Křížová who also added a shootout marker. Ottawa’s offense was led by two goals from Kateřina Mrázová and two assists from both Daryl Watts and Brianne Jenner. Hayley Scamurra also found the back of the net with one of the team’s two powerplay tallies. Grace Zumwinkle leads the season series with two goals and five points and added a shootout goal for good measure. Nicole Hensley started the first and third games of the season series and carries a .945 save percentage against Ottawa. Emerance Maschmeyer started the first three games for Ottawa and posted a collective save percentage of .899. Last game, Minnesota tied a season-high with 46 shots on goal against Sandra Abstreiter.




Ottawa captain Brianne Jenner was on fire before the break with nine points, including three goals and six assists in her last five games and was among the league’s SupraStars for the month of March. She is second in team scoring with 15 points and has the added boost of a fourth World Championship gold. Daryl Watts was also on fire before the break with seven points, including four goals and three assists in her last five games. She scored the team’s first hat trick of the season against Toronto to bring her point total to 13 which ranks third on the team. Both players will miss the chemistry developed with top scorer Kateřina Mrázová (6G 11A) who continues her recovery following an injury suffered while competing with Czechia. Fellow Czech Tereza Vanišová will slide into the first line role in hopes of kickstarting her offense as she’s been held without a point in two games with Ottawa since joining from Montréal at the deadline. Emily Clark (4G 8A) is fourth in team scoring with 12 points and is riding a four-game point streak. Minnesota’s Grace Zumwinkle is tied for fourth in league scoring with 17 points, picking up her 10th goal of the season on Thursday. Captain Kendall Coyne Schofield (6G 9A) has 15 points and has climbed the scoring charts with a five-game point streak that includes two goals and five assists. Fellow Team USA forwards Kelly Pannek (3G 10A) and Taylor Heise (4G 8A) are third and fourth in team scoring with 13 and 12 points respectively and both contributed assists in Thursday’s return. Defender Sophie Jaques had three helpers on Thursday to bring her point total to 10 and is riding a four-game streak.



“You absolutely have to live in the moment. We take a lot of pride and joy in that (World Championship) win and the people that we were with. As soon as you get to Ottawa, we put our other hat on and we are ready to go to work here. Definitely, our eyes are set on trying to make the playoffs with this team and win our game on Saturday.” – Emily Clark, Ottawa


“I think the luxury of any coach is you can frame anything however you want it to be framed. From our perspective, we had 11 players in Utica. They have been playing high level hockey. Other franchises might think that we are more tired. There are all those different ways to look at this. At the end of the day, for me, the World Championship is now done. What was done there was great. It’s now about us to get back to what we do here in Ottawa and making sure that everyone is in a great spot come Saturday.” – Carla MacLeod, Ottawa


“Coming off the break we knew we had five games left and they’re all important. You need to make sure you make it into playoffs, and then make sure you’re carrying momentum, so it really feels like they’ve kind of already started. Ottawa is a team that is very fast, strong, and physical so we have to be ready all over the ice, especially defensively.” – Lee Stecklein, Minnesota


“We know every game is extremely tight and usually comes down to one or two plays. Tonight, will be no different. Ottawa is a very solid team, and we definitely expect their best game. We believe in our group and know that when we play the right way for 60 minutes we can compete with anyone in the league.” – Ken Klee, Minnesota




Minnesota (+11) is first in goal differential and Ottawa (even) is tied for third…Ottawa (2.63) is first in goals-per-game average and Minnesota (2.50) ranks third…Minnesota (1.95) allows the fewest goals-per-game and Ottawa (2.63) allows the most on average…Both Minnesota and Ottawa have scored first in 10 of their games with Minnesota winning nine and Ottawa winning six of those games…The second period is Minnesota’s best offensively with 19 goals and Ottawa’s worst with 11, while the third period is Ottawa’s best with 21 goals and Minnesota’s worst with 11…Minnesota has played in 13 one-goal games and won seven of them, while Ottawa has zero wins in nine one-goal games…Minnesota (+87) is first in shot differential and Ottawa (+44) ranks third…Minnesota (30.55) is first in shots-per-game and Ottawa (29.74) ranks second…Ottawa (27.53) allows the third fewest shots-per-game on average and Minnesota (26.20) allows the second fewest…Ottawa has outshot its opponent 13 times, Minnesota has outshot its opponent 12 times…Ottawa (6.26) averages the third fewest penalty minutes per game and Minnesota (5.50) averages the fewest…Ottawa (15/56) is first in powerplay efficiency at 26.8%…Minnesota (5/48) is fifth on the PP at 10.4%…Ottawa (43/51) is third in penalty kill efficiency at 84.3%…Minnesota (37/51) is sixth on the PK at 72.5%…Grace Zumwinkle (MIN) is second in the league with 10 goals and ranks first with four game winning goals…Kateřina Mrázová (OTT) is in a five-way tie for the league-lead with 11 assists…Tereza Vanišová (OTT) is tied for the league-lead with 31 penalty minutes…Gabbie Hughes (OTT) leads the league with nine minor penalties…Zumwinkle is tied for the league-lead with 82 shots on goal…Hayley Scamurra leads Ottawa with 66 shots…Kelly Pannek (200/369) leads Minnesota in face-offs and win rate at 54.2%…Brianne Jenner (100/186) leads Ottawa in face-off percentage at 53.8%…Hughes (44.8%) leads the team with 324 draws…Emerance Maschmeyer (OTT) has won seven of her 17 starts with one shutout and a goals-against-average of 2.33 and save percentage of .911…Nicole Hensley (MIN) has won seven of her 11 starts with one shutout and a 1.79 GAA that ranks second and a .933 SV% that ranks third…Malia Schneider (OTT) will make her PWHL debut after signing a full Standard Player Agreement ahead of tonight’s game…Sophie Jaques (MIN) will be wearing jersey No. 5 tonight…Minnesota is dressing the same forwards and defensive pairings as in their Thursday night game.






Watts | Jenner | Vanišová
Clark | Hughes | Scamurra
Gilmore | Snodgrass | Shiga
Davis | Darkangelo | Demers


Tejralová | Harmon
Roese | Bell
Isbell | Buckles

Maschmeyer | Abstreiter


Scratches: Boyd, Della Rovere, Gasparics, McQuigge, Mrázová




Křížová | Pannek | Zumwinkle
Coyne Schofield | Heise | Cava
Butorac | Fleming | Kunin
Bryant | DeGeorge | Brodt

Stecklein | Jaques
Flaherty | Buchbinder
Greco | Channell

Hensley | Rooney


Scratches: Leveille, Schepers




Referees: Béatrice Fortin (Longueuil, QC) and Damian Figueira (Toronto, ON).
Linespersons: Stéphanie Gagnon (Princeville, QC) and Sophie Thomson (Halifax, NS).


Follow the league on all social media platforms @thepwhlofficial plus team accounts @pwhl_ottawa and @pwhl_minnesota.