February 15, 2014

Sochi Surprises: Noora Raty Retires


There were two large surprises on the women's side of the Sochi hockey tournament on Saturday.

The first was that Swedes upset the Finns by a score of 4-2, knocking the bronze medal favorite Finns out of medal contention.

The second was that Finland's star goaltender Noora Raty announced her retirement immediately following the game.

“My playing ends here,” Raty told the Olympic News Service after the game. “I already decided before the tournament that this is my last international tournament.”

Next season the 24-year-old will be on a try-out with Kiekko-Vantaa of the second-tier men’s league in Finland and she hopes to earn a professional contract.

“If I can play professional hockey I will keep playing,” said Raty. “But if I can’t earn any money from playing I might be done.” Finland coach Mika Pieniniemi paid tribute to Raty’s outstanding career.

Raty, who started playing on the national team at the age of 15, is easily considered to be one of the best female goaltenders in the world. This was her third Olympics. She also competed in seven World Championships and led the University of Minnesota to two NCAA championships.

In other women's hockey news from Sochi, Switzerland eliminated Russia from medal contention with a 2-0 shutout by Florence Schelling.

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