Finland to be awarded gold medal payout after controversial loss

Ailish Forfar
NHL Editor
Gold medal pay. (Mikko Stig/Lehtikuva via AP)

The Women’s World Championship gold medal game was an emotional rollercoaster, to put it mildly. Finland made history by winning its first gold medal —on home ice and in dramatic overtime fashion.

It was a historic and totally unexpected triumph for the national team.

Until it wasn’t.

Finland’s overtime goal, scored by Petra Nieminen, was overturned after a lengthy review. And the United States went on to win, for real, in a shootout.

To review, Finland’s Jenni Hiirikoski clearly makes contact with USA goaltender Alex Risgby outside of the goal crease, but only after Rigsby lunges into Hiirikoski’s lane. The goal eventually called back for the contact despite the American goaltender being assessed a minor tripping penalty on the play.

Finland was unable to convert on the power play and the United States forced a shootout, where it won its fifth consecutive gold medal at the Women’s World Championships.

In a classy move, Finland’s Ice Hockey Federation has decided to award the players a gold-medal payout instead of silver.

Although it’s not the victory they wanted, the Finns now have a little more than silver in their pockets.