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Female goalie Szabados signing with men's team


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EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Canadian women's goalie Shannon Szabados has agreed to a contract with the Columbus Cottonmouths of the Southern Professional Hockey League.

The two-time Olympic champion announced Friday on Twitter that she will play for the Georgia men's team.

"Well here goes nothing," Szabados tweeted. "Heading to the SPHL to join the Cottonmouths for the remainder of their season. See you on the 12th guys! snakes"

The 27-year-old Szabados was in the news this week when she filled in at practice for the Edmonton Oilers while the NHL team waited for Viktor Fasth to arrive after a trade with the Anaheim Ducks.

Szabados was the first woman to play in the Western Hockey League and will become the first in the SPHL. She played provincial college hockey at Northern Alberta Institute of Technology with current Cottonmouths players Jordan Draper, Andy Willigar and Kyle Johnson.

"I am very excited to get a world-class athlete that has competed and has faced high-pressured situations. Shannon has won at every level she has played, in women's hockey or men's hockey," Cottonmouths coach Jerome Bechard said. "She won a championship with NAIT last year alongside Andy Willigar and Jordan Draper, so I know she can compete at this level. We are working on her immigration, and we are looking to sign her officially Thursday, where she will be backing up (Andrew) Loewen. She will play when she feels comfortable and situated."

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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