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Ice Hockey

Updated: 2006-02-10 14:30

Ice Hockey
Sweden's Maria Rooth (L) is checked into the boards by Russia's Maria Barykina during the second period of their ice hockey game at the Torino 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Turin, Italy February 11, 2006. [Reuters]
The word “hockey” comes from the old French word "hocquet", meaning "stick". The origins of ice hockey are unclear, but it is widely accepted that the British are responsible for bringing hockey to North America. Soldiers stationed in Nova Scotia, Canada, played the earliest games. In 1879, a group of college students at McGill University in Montreal organised competitions and developed the first known set of hockey rules. The sport migrated south to the United States during the 1890s. The first known hockey games took place between Johns Hopkins and Yale Universities in 1895. The first Olympic Games to include ice hockey for men were the Antwerp Games in 1920. However, the first Olympic Winter Games took place in 1924 in Chamonix.

At the Olympic Winter Games, women compete in an eight-team tournament (women's hockey was added to the Olympic Winter Games programme in Nagano in 1998), whereas men compete in a 12-team tournament. A team must not have more than six players on the ice while play is in progress. Typically, these players are one goalkeeper, two defenders, two wings and one centre. Fewer players can be on the ice as a result of penalties: a goalkeeper can be replaced by a skater during a delayed penalty, or at any other time of the game, at the team's risk. A regular game consists of three 20-minute periods, with a 15-minute intermission after the first and second periods. Teams change ends for each period. If a tie occurs in a medal-round game in which a winner must be determined, a five-minute sudden-victory overtime period is played. In the gold medal game, a 20-minute sudden-victory period is played subsequent to another 15-minute intermission. In the case of a tie after any sudden-victory period, a game-winning penalty shoot competition takes place to determine the winner.


ice hockey Men
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