Team Canada's women's national development team is headed to the gold medal game of the 2016 Nations Cup and they have current Mustang Katelyn Gosling to thank.
Gosling, who is in her fifth and final year at Western, is currently representing her country overseas in Germany and scored the game-winning-goal in Tuesday's 4–2 win over Russia. It was her first career international goal.
“I don’t really remember what it felt like,” Gosling said via email from Germany Wednesday afternoon. “At first I thought it was tipped in. The girls and staff here were really amazing in making me feel special and I was overwhelmed with their excitement, let alone my own. My parents were here to watch and that really meant a lot to me.”
Gosling also profusely thanked her coaches and teammates for helping her get to where she is.
“My teammates always push me to be better and support me through everything,” she said. “The coaching staff, [Dave Barrett, Kelly Paton and Blair Webster], continuously work with me to improve my game and expand my knowledge.”
Because there are only six teams in the tournament, Canada has advanced to the gold medal game after a 2–0 record to face Finland, who is also 2–0. Canada also won on Monday when they defeated Sweden 2–1 in a shootout.
Gosling has previously represented Canada at both the 2013 and 2015 Winter Universiade, where the top female university hockey players suit up for their respective countries. She recorded four assists in four games in 2015 as Canada won a silver medal.
The Nations Cup is without a doubt the next level for Gosling, as only three players on Team Canada — including her — play at the university level. The rest of the team is comprised of players playing at American colleges or professionally in either the Canadian Women's Hockey League or the National Women's Hockey League.
The gold medal game against Finland will be played in Füssen, Germany on Thursday afternoon at 1 p.m. EST.
Gosling will re-join the Mustangs at the conclusion of the tournament, in time for their matinee on Sunday, Jan. 10 against UOIT.
With files from Serena Quinn