Choosing Sides at the Olympics

By Scott Cole / May / June 2002
June 30th, 2007
The silver medals that Katie King '97 and Tara Mounsey '04 earned while playing on the U.S. Olympic women's hockey team triggered both joy and disappointment. "It's just one of those things - to win a silver medal you have to have lost a game," King says. "It's a difficult situation. You're happy to win a silver medal, but it's hard to see that dream of a gold medal go away."

That dream got away from the U.S. women one late-February evening in Salt Lake City, when Canada upset the favored Americans, 3-2, in the gold-medal game. There were no mixed feelings for Canadian defender Becky Kellar '97, though, only pure joy at capturing the gold medal that had eluded her and her teammates at the first-ever Olympic women's hockey competition in 1998 in Nagano, Japan. There the United States had knocked off Canada, 3-1, in the championship game, forcing Kellar and her fellow Canadians to settle for silver and to watch as gold medals were draped over the heads of her old Brown teammates King and Mounsey. This time, says Kellar, "you had twenty girls still hungry to win after the disappointment of 1998. We were just so motivated and wanted it so badly."

All three former Bears played significant roles in the gold-medal game. Early in the second period, while Kellar was sitting in the penalty box for a hooking infraction, King had tipped in a Mounsey slap shot to tie the game at 1-1. But Kellar got her revenge in the final moments of the period, firing a long lead pass that teammate Jayna Hefford converted into a breakaway goal one second before intermission, to give Canada a 3-1 lead. The assist was Kellar's only point of the Olympics. Mounsey then assisted on Karyn Bye's goal at 16:27 of the third period, cutting Canada's lead to 3-2.

King (four goals, three assists) and Mounsey (no goals, seven assists) finished tied for third in scoring for Team U.S.A. with seven points apiece.

Scott Cole is a writer in North Attleboro, Massachusetts.
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May / June 2002