Prior to the first of five matches that Scotland are to play against Canada at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre, two players were awarded for achieving milestone caps.
Fiona Burnet was winning her 50th cap for Scotland while, at the other end of the scale, Jess Buchanan was earning her first.
Scotland had good possession in the early stages and the first chance of the game fell to McKenzie Bell, after a good interchange by Lucy Lanigan and Nikki Alexander-Lloyd, but the ball got stuck under Bell’s stick in front of an open goal and the chance was gone.
At the other end, Lucy Camlin was called into action at a Canadian penalty corner but she easily padded the ball clear.
As the second quarter progressed, the visitors started to edge the possession, and, although Scotland was solid in defence, they were coming under increasing pressure.
Camlin made another crucial save high under her crossbar after Hannah Haughn let fly on the reverse, as Canada pressed.
Then Canada opened the scoring. Nikki Woodcroft was on hand as she forced the ball over the line at a penalty corner to make it 1-0 for the visitors, with around three minutes of the half to go.
Canada continued to threaten from early in the second half, but some excellent defending by Becky Ward cleared the danger as the Canadians piled into the Scots’ D. Some persistence by Charlotte Watson, Sarah Jamieson and Kate Holmes took Scotland up the pitch and won a penalty corner.
A well-worked routine then lead to Charlotte Watson sweeping the ball into the net to make it 1-1 just before the end of the quarter.
Canada then began to rack up the penalty corners and Steph Norlander battled through to it 2-1. Two minutes later it went to 3-1 when Haughn deflected the ball into the roof of the net during another goal-mouth scramble.
The fourth came quickly and a swift break down the right cut Scotland open and Holly Stewart, enjoying the end result of a four-on-two, scored with a far post tap-in to make it 4-1.
Jen Eadie had an effort from a late-on penalty corner to try and pull one back for Scotland but Kaitlyn Williams in goal for Canada saved well to her right.
In the end it was a well-deserved win for Canada and the teams meet again tomorrow (Thursday 16th) at 7pm to play the second of the five-match series in Glasgow, following on from the first of the Development Squad v France matches.
Images from the match will appear here over the next few days.