Hayley Wickenheiser is back at the Olympics. Again.
And she's back on the scoresheet. Again.
The all-time leading scorer in Olympic women's hockey history, Wickenheiser added to her record with her 17th career goal of the Winter Games on Saturday and Canada coasted to a 5-0 victory over Switzerland in both teams' opener. Wickenheiser has participated in every Olympics since women's hockey was made an official sport in 1998, and she has scored in every one.
"She's got 'It,'" coach Kevin Dineen said. "I don't know what 'It' is, but whatever makes someone extremely successful in their chosen field, she's got. She's just the real deal."
Rebecca Johnston had a goal and two assists and Marie-Philip Poulin had one of each for Canada, which hadn't ever beaten the Swiss by fewer than six goals in any competition. Charline Labonte stopped all 14 shots she faced for the shutout.
"It's the best result we've ever had against Canada," said Swiss goalie Florence Schelling, who made 64 saves. "It shows we have improved."
Switzerland plays next on Monday against the United States, the defending world champion and a 3-1 winner over Finland earlier Saturday. Canada will play Finland as the top four teams in the tournament compete for two byes that would place them directly into the semifinals.
Wickenheiser was already the Olympics' all-time leading scorer, when she was named her country's flag-bearer at Friday night's opening ceremony, and he has been given the Order of Canada. She also went to the 2000 Olympics as a member of the Canadian softball team.
"I still think I'm young," said Wickenheiser, who is 35. "I've just been around a long time."
Jocelyne Larocque, one of the last cuts before the Vancouver Olympics in 2010, gave Canada its first goal of the tournament only 85 seconds after the opening faceoff when a rebound squirted out to her at the blue line and she wristed a shot past Schelling.
"It was my first shot on my first shift," Larocque said. "I couldn't ask for a better start to the tournament. I hope someone kept the puck for me, but if they didn't, that's OK. I'm sure I'll remember the moment."
Tara Watchorn made it 2-0 five minutes later when Schelling made a save on Johnston's shot but was unable to protect the rebound. By the time Wickenheiser scored a short-handed goal 4 minutes into the second period, the rout was on.