A D.C. Superior Court grand jury voted yesterday not to indict four Washington Capitals hockey players who were accused last month by a 17-year-old girl of participating in sexually assaulting her.

The girl, who has not been identified by authorities, told D.C. police detectives that the Capitals players -- right wing Dino Ciccarelli, 30; left wing Geoff Courtnall, 27; and defensemen Neil Sheehy, 30, and Scott Stevens, 26 -- in various ways participated in sexually assaulting her in a limousine outside a Georgetown bar during a season-ending party on May 12.

The players either denied the girl's accusations or kept silent, and the matter was brought before a grand jury. Sources close to the investigation said the grand jury decision hinged on the girl's credibility. The sources said that law enforcement authorities were certain that there had been sexual activity in the limousine, but that the grand jury did not believe that the girl was forced to have sex with the players.

The girl, in her first interview since making the allegations, said last night that while she was disappointed by the grand jury vote, she and her lawyers intend to pursue the matter. "I'm not finished with it yet," she said. "I'm not going to give up."

The Washington Capitals organization said in a statement yesterday that although there was no indictment, it did not condone the players' conduct in the limousine.

"Although there was no criminal activity involved in this incident, we realize there has been substantial damage to the image of the Washington Capitals organization within the community," said the statement by owner Abe Pollin, President Dick Patrick and General Manager David Poile.

"We deeply regret this situation, and we do not condone or excuse the conduct of the players involved and their failure to appreciate the responsibility they have to shoulder as role models for young people," said the statement.

"I'm relieved," Ciccarelli said by telephone from his home after learning of the vote. "I'm glad it's over, so I can get on with my life, with my family and with the Capitals."

Like Ciccarelli, Sheehy said he was pleased. "Obviously, I'm extremely relieved," Sheehy said from Minnesota. "I'm very concerned about the young fans who idolized us," Sheehy said. "I've gone out of my way for them, and I will continue to do so. I hope the thing they will learn from this is the importance of telling the truth. They can see what happens when the truth isn't told."

In the days after the accusations were made, Sheehy declined to comment when asked if he had sex with the girl. Yesterday, he declined to say what happened in the limousine. "The grand jury has spoken," Sheehy said. "That's all that needs to be said."

Courtnall could not be reached, but his attorney, Donald Bucklin, said that Courtnall "is very pleased."

"From all the evidence I know of, there was no basis to support the allegation of a rape," Bucklin said.

Stevens also could not be reached, but he said through his attorney, Earl Silbert, that "during the investigation the government told me that I was merely a witness, as were others. I was interviewed by government authorities and voluntarily appeared before the grand jury."

In an interview in her parents' home in Fairfax County, the girl said repeatedly that she was "very confident the truth would come out." Although she would not discuss the details of the case on the advice of her attorneys, she said that a civil lawsuit is a possibility.

She and her parents, who were present during the interview, praised the police and prosecutors for their handling of the matter.

The girl, whose trophies for downhill skiing and figure skating adorn shelves in her family's home, described herself as an athlete, but not a sports fan. She said she attended only three or four Capitals games, only because she was a friend of one of the players, and said she had never attended any party involving the hockey players before the evening in question.

"I'm not a fan of the Capitals," she said. "I don't consider me a groupie, as they put it."

She said she was frustrated at not being allowed by her lawyers to talk about the case. "I've wanted to tell my story for a long time. It's very frustrating," she said. "I've seen some wild things in the paper and on the TV, but I couldn't do anything about that."

Asked how she felt about the whole situation, she said: "How do I feel? I feel" -- she threw her head back and paused a few moments -- "I have a lot of feelings, but there's not any way to point out how I really feel. I feel angry, very angry."

"She spent a lot of time blocking things out," her mother said. "I've always worried about {her}. I've been very proud of her for coming forward. But as a mother, I'm very worried."

Many facts surrounding the incident -- which took place in a limousine parked in back of Champions, a bar at 1206 Wisconsin Ave. NW -- still are unclear.

Capitals left wing Nick Kypreos released a statement yesterday saying news accounts of his involvement were inaccurate.

The Washington Post last month quoted sources as saying Kypreos told investigators, before visiting the grand jury, that he had stepped into the limousine with a bucket of chicken, but left when he saw the girl struggling with the players.

"These statements were incorrect. I neither observed what was reported, nor did I ever make such a statement to investigators."

A source close to the investigation said yesterday that Kypreos told the grand jury that he stepped inside the limousine and saw the girl inside laughing and joking with the players. Kypreos then left the limousine to get a bucket of chicken and when he returned, saw no indication that the girl was being forced to do anything against her will, the source said Kypreos told the jurors.

Staff writer Peter Baker contributed to this report.