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News for 18 July 2015

All the news for Saturday 18 July 2015

At end of pool play, Argentina and United States women top pools

Abigail Raye of Canada 2015 Pan American Games - Mexico v Canada. Photo: Yan Huckendubler

With wins on day 3, Argentina tops pool A and United States tops pool B. Chile and Canada are second in pools A and B, respectively. Macarena Rodriguez from Argentina is honored for her 200th cap. Danielle Hennig was honored for her 100th cap.

On the final day of pool play, rain came down during the morning matches. Despite the rain, many fans still filled the stands including a whole United States cheering section.  Both Argentina and the United States finished pool play with zero goals against.

Mexico vs. Canada: 0-4 (ht: 0-3)

On the final day of pool play, rain came down during the morning matches. Despite the rain, many fans still filled the stands including a whole United States cheering section.  Both Argentina and the United States finished pool play with zero goals against. After pool play, Noel Barrionuevo (ARG) leads all goal scorers with five goals; and Agustina Albertarrio and Delfina Merino for Argentina each have four goals.

Host Canada played Mexico in the final women’s pool match. Prior to the match, Danielle Hennig was honored for her 100th cap. Canada held most of the possession for the first half of the first quarter. In the 7th minute a high ball save by Mexico’s keeper Jesus Castillo resulted in a penalty corner for Canada, but their shot went wide. Canada continued to pressure on attack, but Mexico started to send multiple players to hassle the Canadian offense. As a result, Mexico was able to get the ball near their attacking circle for a few minutes late in the first quarter. Canada prevented Mexico from getting a shot off. With little time remaining in the first quarter, Canada was not able to complete a counter attacking play before the end of the first quarter.  The score remained Mexico 0, Canada 0 at the end of the first quarter.

The second quarter started with Canada immediately earning two penalty corners. Castillo blocked the first drag flick, but the second by Karli Johansen sailed right over Castillo to give Canada the lead over Mexico in the 17th minute. Mireya Bianchi played strong defense for Mexico preventing Canada from capitalizing off some scoring opportunities. By the 22nd minute, Mexico had forced play back into the midfield. Fernanda Oveido then had Mexico’s first attacking opportunities of the quarter, but lost the ball off the endline. Canada regained possession and earned another penalty corner in the 26th minute. Canada’s Thea Culley completed the well-executed play from the left post to make the score Mexico 0, Canada 2. A minute later, Canada earned another penalty corner and the high shot hit the top of the goal cage. Canada collected the rebound, but Castillo saved the next shot. Canada kept forcing penalty corners, but could not get shots past Castillo. In the final minute of the second quarter, however, Canada found a way around Castillo on a penalty corner play with Hannah Haugn waiting on the right post whose penalty corner goal made the score Mexico 0, Canada 3 that remained at halftime.

The third quarter started with Mexico fast on the attack. Mexico’s Michel Navarro had Mexico’s closest shot on goal thus far in the match. Canada’s keeper Kaitlyn Williams blocked Navarro’s shot. Canada regained possession and continued to pressure on attack, but could not capitalize off penalty corners early in the third quarter. For the rest of the third quarter, Mexico and Canada shared more of the possession. With few shots in the third quarter, Canada’s best shot in the quarter was by Haugn in the 43rd minute, but Castillo made an amazing stick save. Thus, the score remained Mexico 0, Canada 3 at the end of the third quarter.

The fourth quarter started with Canada back pressuring on attack. Canada soon earned more penalty corners, but similar to earlier corners in the match Castillo was efficient at blocking Canada’s direct penalty corner shots. Canada continued to pressure on attack, but Castillo continued to successfully challenge all of Canada’s shots. In the 56th minute, Haughn was able to shoot right past Castillo to make the score Mexico 0, Canada 4. Mexico also did not stop trying to attack had had a shot go high in the 58th minute. With either team able to take another shot, the match ended Mexico 0, Canada 4.

Argentina vs. Dominican Republic: 12-0 (ht: 8-0)

In a pool A match, Argentina and Dominican Republic played. Prior to the match, Argentina’s Macarena Rodriguez was honored for her 200th cap. In the third minute Argentina earned the first penalty corners of the match. Argentina’s Noel Barrionuevo sent in a high drag flick to give her team the early lead. Argentina continued to attack. Dominican Republic’s keeper Cindy De La Rosa blocked a hard shot by Rocio Sanchez to keep Argentina from quickly increasing their lead. With solid defense led by Captain Soledad Del Pino and De La Rosa the Dominican Republic kept Argentina from scoring further a number of minutes. In the 10th minute, the Dominican Republic’s Agustina Birocho had a quick run on attack near their attacking circle, but Argentina quickly regained possession. After an incredible defensive save by the Dominican Republic’s Maria Disanti, Argentina was awarded two penalty corners. After the first penalty corner went wide, Barrionuevo got her second penalty corner of the match in the 12 minute. Agustina Albertarrio gave her team a three goal lead in the 14th minute that remained going into the second quarter.

The second quarter started with Argentina still pressuring on attack. Back-to-back goals by Pilar Romang and Sanchez made the score Argentina 5, Dominican Republic 0 by the 19th minute. Argentina then earned a couple more penalty corners. De La Rosa made a great save with her leg to prevent yet another quick goal by Argentina. Disanti had another good defensive save of an Argentina penalty corner. Despite Dominican Republic’s defensive effort, Rodriguez continued Argentina’s rapid scoring with a goal in the 24th minute. Then Delfina Marino scored off her signature reverse stick shot in the 27th minute. Dominican Republic substituted their keeper De La Rosa for Nayrobi Pichardo. Immediately following the substitution Romang hit a hard shot right from the top of the circle right past Pichardo in the 29th minute to make the score Argentina 8, Dominican Republic 0 that remained at halftime.

The third quarter started with Argentina continuing their fast paced attack. Just one minute into the third quarter, Paula Ortiz put the ball in to make it Argentina 9, Dominican Republic, 0. And then Fantasia Gomes pushed in a penalty corner in the 32nd minute to give her team a ten goal lead. Keeper De La Rosa then came back in for Pichardo and immediately saved a hard shot by Merino. The Dominican Republic did not let up and earned a couple penalty corners in the 39th minute. Argentina’s keeper Maria Mutio saved both shots. Argentina went back on the attack, but the Dominican Republic played strong defense to keep Argentina from scoring further in the third quarter to keep the score Argentina 10, Dominican Republic 0

Sanchez scored her second goal of the match in the 48th minute. Unlike the previous quarters, Argentina did not go on to score multiple goals very quickly. The Dominican Republic continued to well defend their goal cage. It was not until the 59th minute when Argentina was able to score again in the fourth quarter off a shot by Luciana Molina. In the final minute, the Dominican Republic held off another Argentina penalty corner to keep the final result Argentina 12, Dominican Republic 0.

Uruguay vs. Chile: 0-3 (ht: 0-2)

In the other Pool B match, Uruguay and Chile met. The first quarter started with play in Chile’s attacking end.  Chile’s Carolina Garcia scored in the 6th minute to give Chile the lead. A minute later, a shot by Filipek was perfectly deflected by Manuela Urroz to increase her team’s lead. Uruguay continued to battle for possession, but could not generate attacking opportunities. Uruguay was able to largely keep Chile from taking more than a few shots.

Chile earned a penalty corner to start the second quarter. Uruguay’s keeper Rosanna Paselle blocked Chile’s penalty corner shot.  Similar to the first quarter, Chile had more possession than Uruguay in the second half, but Uruguay kept playing strong defense. Half way through the second quarter, with Uruguay still playing well defensively, Chile continued to pass the ball in the midfield. Eventually, Chile broke through into their attacking circle and earned a penalty corner in the 26th minute. Paselle again saved a Chile penalty corner shot to keep Chile from increasing their lead. Josefa Villalabeitia and Francisca Tala had one of Chile’s best scoring opportunities late in the second quarter, but could not connect. With no more scoring opportunities by either team in the second quarter, the score at halftime was still Uruguay 0, Chile 2.

The third quarter continued as the second quarter ended with Chile controlling possession and Uruguay playing smart defense. As a result, Chile was not able to penetrate their attacking circle much in the third quarter. Uruguay’s only shot on goal was by Janine Stanley in the 42nd minute, but the Chilean defense was there to divert the shot. With Chile also unable to score in the third quarter, the score remained Uruguay 0, Chile 2 at the end of the third quarter.

In the fourth quarter, Chile pressured even harder on attack. Chile earned a penalty corner in the 49th minute and Camila Caram capitalized. After Chile was not able to convert two more penalty corners, Uruguay came back fired up on attack. Uruguay was able to get down in their attacking end for their best chances to score in the quarter and had possession for a number of minutes at the end of the fourth quarter, but Chile’s defense prevented Uruguay from getting a shot off.  Thus, the match ended Uruguay 0, Chile 3.

United States vs. Cuba: 12-0 (ht: 6-0)

To start the last day of pool play, the United States and Cuba played. The United States got on the scoreboard early in the second minute after Paige Selenski crossed the ball across the goal cage to Katie O’Donnell who was waiting on the opposite post. The United States maintained the attacking pressure. Cuba played strong team defense to prevent the United States from having more scoring opportunities until the 12th minute when the United States earned a penalty corner. Cuba’s keeper Heidy Gonzalez blocked the penalty corner shot by United States’ Lauren Crandall. In the final minute of the first quarter, Selenski looked again to cross the ball to teammates near the goal post, but Selenski’s initial pass went into the goal to make the score United States 2, Cuba 0.

The second quarter started with the United States coming out with high attacking energy. Melissa Gonzalez dribbled around the penalty spot and shot a rocket past keeper Gonzalez to put her team ahead by three goals in the 17th minute. Play continued in the United States attacking end.  Rachel Dawson converted the United States’ second penalty corner of the match in the 21st minute to make the score United States 4, Cuba 0. By the 27th minute, the score had increased to United States 6, Cuba 0 off back-to-back goals by O’Donnell and Jill Witmer, respectively. At the end of the second quarter, the score remained United States 6, Cuba 0.

The third quarter started with the United States back on attack and immediately with a penalty corner. This time keeper Gonzalez was ready for Dawson’s penalty corner shot. Cuba’s Sunaylis Nikle and Brirzaida Ramos played tight defense near their defensive goal, but the United States took advantage by moving the ball to the top of their circle where Michelle Vitesse was waiting. Vitesse blasted a hard shot into goal to put her team ahead by seven goals. A minute later, Katie Reinprecht completed a perfectly executed penalty corner play to make the score United States 8, Cuba 0 in the 36th minute. Cuba did not let up however and prevented the United States from scoring further in the third quarter.

Like the third quarter, the fourth quarter also stated with a penalty corner goal this time by Katelyn Falgowski. With back-to-back goals by Michelle Kasold and Melissa Gonzalez the United States had increased their lead by 11 goals within the first three minutes if the fourth quarter. Nikle continued to play strong one-on-one defense, but eventually the United States earned another corner. After keeper Gonzalez blocked the initial shot, Witmer collected the ball for her second goal of the match in the 54th minute to make the score United States 12, Cuba 0. In the 57th minute, Cuba had a rare opportunity on attack as Captain Mileysi Argentel ran down near Cuba’s attacking circle. While the United States recovered the ball before Argentel could get a shot off, Cuba kept the United States from also taking a shot in the final minute. Thus, the final score was United States 12, Cuba 0.

The competition continues with the crossover round on 20 July.

Pan American Hockey Federation media release

Quarter-final line-up confirmed in Toronto

Teams on the hunt for a ticket to Rio at Pan American Games in Toronto, Canada

Women’s Day 3 at the Pan American Games Hockey competition in Toronto saw USA confirm their status as the winners of Pool B, while Chile took second place in the pool with an important victory over South American rivals Uruguay. In Pool A, Argentina made it three wins out of three with a big win against Dominican Republic before Canada confirmed a second place finish by seeing off Mexico.

The results confirmed the line-ups for the cross-over quarter-finals which take place on Monday (20th July), with Argentina facing Cuba, Chile playing Mexico, USA taking on Dominican Republic while hosts Canada clashing with Uruguay.

The coveted Pan American Games Gold medal comes with a direct qualification ticket to Rio 2016, ensuring that there is a huge amount at stake in this illustrious competition. More details on the matches can be found below.

Pool B
USA 12-0 Cuba
Craig Parnham’s USA finished Pool B with a 100 percent win record courtesy of a comprehensive victory over Cuba that saw nine different players make their mark on the scoreboard. The result confirmed USA’s place at the top of the pool, meaning that they will face the team that finishes bottom of Pool A in the quarter-finals. The ever-impressive Katie O’Donnell opened the scoring in the second minute, with Paige Selenski doubling the advantage ahead of a second quarter that saw Melissa Gonzalez, Rachel Dawson, O’Donnell and Jill Witmer take the score to 6-0 at half time. The scoring sequence was repeated after half time, with two goals coming in the third quarter through Michelle Vitesse and Katie Reinprecht before Katelyn Falgowski, Michelle Kasold, Gonzalez and Witmer netted the four goals in the final quarter to complete the match scoring. USA - who currently sit 5th in the FIH World Rankings - have been in sparkling form in Toronto, and look more than capable of defending the Pan American Games title that they won in Guadalajara in 2011.

Uruguay 0-3 Chile
The race for second place in Pool B was won by Chile, who claimed a very significant win over Uruguay thanks to goals from Sofia Filipek, Manuela Urroz and team captain Camila Caram. The two teams came into the match locked together on three points, and therefore knew that the result would have a significant impact on who they would face in the quarter-finals. The victor would be guaranteed a meeting with the third ranked team from Pool A, while the loser would faced a potentially trickier game against Pool A’s runner up. First quarter goals from Filipek and Urroz gave higher-ranked Chile a lead that they were never to surrender, with Uruguay battling hard but failing to find a way past Chilean goalkeeper Claudia Schuler. The result was put beyond doubt 11 minutes from time, with captain fantastic Camila Caram firing home a penalty corner to seal a crucial victory for Chile over their South American rivals.

Pool A
Argentina 12-0 Dominican Republic
Pool A winners Argentina made it three wins out of three by outclassing Dominican Republic on the occasion of team captain Macarena Rodriguez’s 200th international appearance. Las Leonas were on fire in the first two periods, opening up an eight goal advantage ahead of half time thanks to strikes from Noel Barrionuevo (2), Agustina Albertarrio, Pilar Romang (2), Rocio Sanchez, capain Rodriguez and Delfina Merino. Maria Ortiz and Julia Gomez took the score to 10-0 moments after half time, but excellent defensive work from Dominican Republic reduced Argentina’s all-stars to just two additional goals, with Sanchez and Luciana Molina on target in the fourth quarter. In the quarter-finals, Argentina will face Pool B’s bottom placed team Cuba, while Dominican Republic’s fourth place finish in Pool A sets up a meeting with Pool B winners USA.

Mexico 0-4 Canada
Canada secured a second place finish in Pool A by defeating Mexico to set up a quarter-final meeting against Pool B’s third placed team Uruguay. For Mexico, the result sets up a quarter-final meeting with Chile, who finished second in Pool B. Following a goal-less opening quarter, Canada asserted their authority on the match with trio of strikes in the second period, with Karli Johansen, Thea Culley and Hannah Haughn putting the North Americans into a 3-0 lead at half time. Haughn wrapped things up in the fourth quarter with a field goal to complete the scoring.

Keep up with all of the action on www.panamhockey.org.

#PAGhockey15 #TO2015 #RoadToRio

FIH site

Clinical performance lands Canadian women second place in Pool A

Canada scores three on penalty corners, beats Mexico 4-0

Shaheed Devji

Photo: Yan Huckendubler

The Canadian women's field hockey team saved its best performance of Pan American Games pool play for its last match, winning convincingly 4-0 over Mexico Friday at the Pan Am Fields in Toronto.

Canada's performance was near perfect, as they controlled possession for the majority of the game, converted on three penalty corners, and gave nothing to the Mexicans offensively.

"We knew that Mexico wasn't going to go down without a fight," says forward Hannah Haughn, who scored twice in the win. "We were both going for second spot in our pool. We're just excited to move on with another win."

With the win, Canada secures second place in Pool A and will face Pool B's third place finisher, Uruguay, in one of the four tournament quarterfinals on Monday (4:30pm PT/7:30pm ET).

From the moment the game began, Canada controlled the run of play, with the first two minutes entirely being played in the Mexican end.

Canada's first good chance came in the sixth minute on a penalty corner when Karli Johansen fired a dragflick just wide.

The Canadian build up continued to improve through the first quarter, but the finishing didn't come until the second.

Some nice play along the right sideline from Haughn resulted in a spell of penalty corners from Canada.

First Johansen was robbed by Mexican keeper Jesus Castillo who dove to stop the flick which was headed in the net. Brienne Stairs picked up the rebound and Castillo made a sliding two-pad stack save to keep the game scoreless.

Canada finally broke through in the seventeenth minute when Johansen's flick was perfectly placed by Castillo. The goal was her third of the tournament.

From there, Canada never looked back.

Thea Culley and Haughn scored goals on set plays off penalty corners in the twenty-sixth and twenty-ninth minutes to give Canada the 3-0 lead at half-time.

"We know that we've got a strong battery," says defender Danielle Hennig who is one of Canada' dragflickers and who played in her 100th international match on Friday. "We trust that they can put it away and we did that today"

Haughn added her second of the match in the second half when her seeing eye shot went through the legs of a few defenders before beating Castillo in the fifty-sixth minute.

After winning two of its three games in pool play, Canada now moves onto the quarterfinal round where it will face Uruguay, which it beat 2-0 at the World League Semifinal in June.

"It's the same as we prepare for any team," says Hennig. "We have our game plan. We're going to try and come out and impose what we do best on them."

The match between Canada and Uruguay is scheduled to take place on Monday, July 20th at 7:30pm ET.

Field Hockey Canada media release

Canadian Pan Am field hockey teams on medal course

Argentina major obstacle for Canadian men and women after successful preliminary round.

By Curtis Rush

Canada's Natalie Sourisseau and Sara McManus celebrate after setting up Hannah Haughn's goal against Mexico on Friday. Lucas Oleniuk

Argentina is the class of field hockey at the Pan Am Games.

That could be a problem for the Canadian women, who have to bump them off to qualify for the 2016 Olympics.

The Argentine women destroyed Mexico 9-0, sliced through Canada 5-0 and routed the Dominican Republic 12-0 in the preliminary round.

A veteran team brimming with international experience, they have developed a reputation for tenaciousness. Their success also owes much to the legacy of superstar Luciana Aymar, regarded as the greatest women’s player of all time.

“It’s their national game for females,” Canadian women’s coach Ian Rutledge said. “It’s no different (from) hockey in Canada. The Argentine girls are superstars in their own country.”

The Canadian women, many of them competing in their first Pan Ams, got off to a robust start here with a 12-1 rout of the Dominican Republic and on Friday, they outplayed Mexico 4-0 to wrap up the eight-team preliminary round with a 2-1 record. Their quarter-finals begin Monday against Uruguay.

Rutledge, hired two years ago, is building toward a potential podium finish at the 2020 Olympics.

Midfielder Kate Gillis, who turns 26 next month, hopes to be around then, although she’s not discounting a victory here.

“If my body can take it, another four years will be no problem,” she said post-match. “A lot of people say that, because of the experience factor, you don’t hit your prime until about 28.”

Gillis, who was born in Toronto and attended high school in Kingston, recently transferred to the University of British Columbia from Boston College so she could play full time with the national team. Her father is Mike Gillis, former general manager of the Vancouver Canucks. Her mother, Diane, was once a long jumper on the Canadian track and field team. They are both here for support.

It was her mom who encouraged her to try out for the high school field hockey team in Grade 9. Gillis didn’t like the fact she had to wear a skirt while playing, but she put those concerns aside and made the cut in her first year.

“I was definitely a tomboy growing up, so skirts were not my thing,” Gillis said.

Gillis played a lot of hockey growing up: “I shot right, which was lucky.”

That’s because there are no left-hand sticks in field hockey, and only one side of the stick can be used.

On the men’s side, captain Scott Tupper grew up playing Triple-A hockey for the Vancouver Thunderbirds. He was also lucky to have been a right-hand shot, but thinks a lefty shooter in hockey can still make the switch.

“I think it’s a difficult shift at first, but it can be done,” Tupper said.

The Canadian men beat Brazil 9-1 and Chile 1-0, and wrap up the preliminary round Saturday against Mexico before Tuesday’s quarter-finals. Canada is expected to meet Argentina for the 11th consecutive time in the Pan Am final, but even if they lose the Canucks are virtually guaranteed a berth in Rio based on their recent World League success.

The women’s final is July 24, while the men’s final is July 25.

The Toronto Star

USWNT Moves into Playoffs with Spotless Record after Scoring Frenzy Over Cuba

Photo: Paul Winstanley

TORONTO, Canada – In their third and final pool play match of the 2015 Pan American Games, the U.S. Women’s National Team’s dominant scoring performance led them to a 12-0 victory over 43rd FIH World Ranked Cuba. Today's important win puts Team USA at the top of Pool B heading into the Quarterfinals on Monday. This game marks three clean triumphs for Team USA who have impressively not conceded any goals at the event. The team recorded a 5-0 win over Uruguay as well as a 2-0 win over Chile. 

"We produced a performance that allowed us to score some goals today," said U.S. Women's National Team Head Coach Craig Parnham. "It's good for the team, it's good for our confidence and sets us up well for the next game. We're pleased with pool play. There are some difficult teams here and there's a lot of unknowns for us. For the team to get through pool play scoring goals and not conceding any is obviously encouraging for us, and we need to continue that form and take that into the playoff games."

Wasting no time, Team USA got on the board early in the 2nd minute of play on a goal by Katie O’Donnell (Blue Bell, Pa.). The scoring chance developed as Kelsey Kolojejchick (Larksville, Pa.) drove hard into the circle to locate O’Donnell who moved the Cuban goalie off angle to score and give Team USA a 1-0 lead.

The USWNT maintained possession and were able to effectively defend against any Cuban threats and in the 11th minute earned their first penalty corner. Off the corner, Lauren Crandall (Doylestown, Pa.) took a strike on cage that went just right of the post. Shots on target were repetitively ripped from Team USA's forward line and in the 15th minute of play, Katelyn Falgowski (Landenberg, Pa.) fed a ball to Paige Selenski (Shavertown, Pa.) who dodged two Cuban defenders and slipped it under the goalkeeper to change the score to USA 2, Cuba 0.

Just two minutes later, Falgowski setup another goal as she sent a ball to Melissa Gonzalez (Mohegan Lake, N.Y.) who curled left to crank a shot into the back of the cage, making the score USA 3, Cuba 0.

At the 21st minute mark, Team USA earned a penalty corner opportunity but Cuba’s defensive unit broke early and USA was awarded another corner. On the second opportunity, Rachel Dawson’s (Berlin, N.J.) drag flick hit the glove of Cuban goalie and dropped into the net giving USA a new score of 4-0.

The scoring continued in the 25th minute of play when Julia Reinprecht (Perkasie, Pa.) found O’Donnell who notched her second goal of the game to lift USA to a score of 5-0.

Before the end of the second quarter, Team USA found the back of the cage again on a goal by Jill Witmer (Lancaster, Pa.) who picked up a loose ball in front of the goalmouth to make the score USA 6, Cuba 0 going into halftime.

Coming out of the halftime huddle strong, Team USA earned a penalty corner in the 31st minute. Unsuccessful off the attempt, play resumed with the ball in USA’s possession and in the 35th minute of play O’Donnell found Michelle Vittese (Cherry Hill, N.J.) who rocketed a ball into the net from the right-hand side of the circle to change the score to USA 7, Cuba 0.

Continuing to apply pressure, the USWNT's Kolojejchick forced a defensive error in the offensive end to earn a penalty corner. Perfectly executing the set play, Michelle Kasold (Chapel Hill, N.C.) swept a ball to the left post where Katie Reinprecht (Perkasie, Pa.) redirected it into the goal to lift the USA 8-0.

Starting the fourth quarter with the same consistent attacking intent, Team USA earned a penalty corner in the 46th minute. Despite a bobbled stick stop, Crandall regained control of the ball to lay it to Falgowski who buried the ball from the top, right side of the circle into the cage to add another goal for USA. Just a minute later, on a run into the circle Kasold deflected the ball into the net to tally another Team USA goal. Connecting passes in the midfield to find entry into their offensive end, a backhanded cross courtesy of Selenski was quickly guided into the goal at close range by Gonzalez changing the score to USA 11, Cuba 0.

In the 53rd minute off of a penalty corner, Crandall’s initial strike was saved by Cuba’s goalkeeper but Witmer was fast to react to the rebound with a sharp strike to finish Team USA's scoring frenzy with a score of USA 12, Cuba 0. Today's match recorded nine different goal scorers, three of which scored twice.

"It's definitely a threat going forward because teams have to worry about everyone on the field, not just one or two athletes who repeatedly score," said O'Donnell. "We're pretty well balanced in all of our positions, and I don't ever feel we need that one player to get the job done. That's a calming effect within our team. To have that confidence in every player you pass the ball to is a dream come true for any team."

The next game for the U.S. Women’s National Team will be on Monday, July 20 in the Quarterfinals against the team who finishes fourth in Pool A. For all information regarding USA Field Hockey at the 2015 Pan American Games, including the full schedules, check out the event page and be sure to follow on Twitter @USAFieldHockey for live Team USA game updates.

USFHA media release

USA Field Hockey routs Cuba in Pan Am Games


The United States women's field hockey team got one step closer to defending it's Pan American Games title Friday morning.

Nine different players scored as the Americans routed Cuba 12-0 to claim the top spot in Group B and advance to the quarterfinals Monday. Team USA will play the fourth place team from Pool A, the Dominican Republic, at 7:30 p.m.

The Dominican Republic fell to Argentina, who had won the previous six Pan Am titles before being upset 4-2 by Team USA in Guadalajara in 2011, 12-0 Friday.

The Americans have yet to allow a goal in this year's tournament, shutting out Uruguay 5-0, Chile 2-0 and now Cuba in pool play.

Kelsey Kolojejchick and Katie O'Donnell connected for the game's first goal just two minutes into play.

Paige Selenski, who was recently featured in ESPN's Body Issue, made it 2-0 after taking a pass from Katelyn Falgowski and dodging two Cuban defenders. Falgowski then added another assist two minutes later, feeding Melissa Gonzalez to put Cuba in a three-goal hole.

Rachel Dawson and O'Donnell each tallied a goal before former Penn Manor standout Jill Witmer sent a loose ball into the back of the cage to put Team USA up 6-0 at the half.

Michelle Vittese, Katie Reinprecht, Falgowski, Kasold and Gonzalez each scored in the second half before Witmer closed out the contest with her second goal.

"It's definitely a threat going forward because teams have to worry about everyone on the field, not just one or two athletes who repeatedly score," O'Donnell said in a release from USA Field Hockey.

"We're pretty well balanced in all of our positions, and I don't ever feel we need that one player to get the job done. That's a calming effect within our team. To have that confidence in every player you pass the ball to is a dream come true for any team."

Lancaster Online

2015 Pan American Games in numbers

Macarena Rodriguez (ARG), oldest player in the competition. Photo: Yan Huckendubler


The average age of the 128 players (8 teams with 16 players on their roster) participating in the Men’s Pan American Games in Toronto is 25.8 years old. The youngest team is the USA (22.7), while the oldest team is Cuba (28.7).

At 37, Cuban player Alexander Abreu Abreus is the oldest and is playing in his fourth Pan American Games. His teammate Yoandy Blanco Hernández is 36; he is playing in his fifth Pan Am Games, having collecting bronze medals in 1999 and 2003.

At the other end of the age spectrum, Brazilian Paul Bernard Duncker is the youngest player at 16, just one month younger than Mexican Irvin Baruch Chavez Gómez. There are only 6 teenagers in the competition (1 for Brazil, 2 for Mexico and 3 for Trinidad & Tobago).

The average number of International Caps is 66.4. The team with the least international experience is Cuba (with an average of 31.4 International Caps), while the most experienced team is Argentina (with an average of 129 International Caps), the only squad with an average number of international matches over the hundred mark.

Surprisingly, Cuba is both the oldest and least experienced squad in the competition (based on the numbers provided by their National Association).

The most capped player in the competition is Argentinian stalwart Matias Paredes, with 270 international appearances. He is playing in his forth Pan American Games, having won two Gold Medals (2003 and 2011).

Four additional players have played more than 200 international matches: 2 Argentinians (Juan Martin Lopez, 202, and Pedro Ibarra, 200) and 2 Canadians (David Jameson, 225, and Scott Tupper, 209).

At the other end of the experience ladder, young Mexican goal-keeper José Alan Hernandez Alarcón has only 2 Caps to his credit. 6 additional players have played in less than 10 international matches (2 for Brazil, 2 for Mexico, 1 for Trinidad & Tobago and 1 for the USA).


The average age of the 128 players on the women’s side is 24.1 years old. The youngest team is the Mexico (22.5), while the oldest team is the Dominican Republic (25.5).

At 37, Argentinian captain Macarena Rodriguez is the oldest player, more than twice the age of Mexican Arlette Michelle Estrada Rodriguez, the youngest player at 16 (just one month younger than Mexican Irvin Baruch Chavez Gómez). There are 9 teenagers in the competition (1 for Argentina, 1 for Canada, 1 for Cuba, 1 for the Dominican Republic, 3 for Mexico and 2 for Uruguay).

The average number of International Caps is 66.3, exactly the same as for the men. The team with the least international experience is the Dominican Republic (with an average of 19.2 International Caps), while the most experienced team is the USA (with an average of 132.7 International Caps), 30 more on average that Argentina, usually the most seasoned team in Pan American competitions.

As Cuba on the men’s side, the Dominican Republic is both the oldest and least experienced squad in the competition.

The most capped player on the women’s competition is American Rachel Dawson, with 264 international appearances. Although only 29 years old, she is playing in her 3rd Pan American Games and won a Gold Medal in 2011 in Guadalajara.

Three additional players have played more than 200 international matches: 1 Argentinian (Noel Barrionuevo, 238) and 2 Americans (Lauren Crandall, 255, and Katelyn Falgowski, 205), while Argentinian Macarena Rodriguez, currently standing at 197 Caps, will join the elite 200 club on the last pool match in Toronto.

Mexican Arlette Estrada Rodriguez, the youngest player in the competition, only has 4 Caps to her credit. Four additional players have played in less than 10 international matches (1 for Argentina, 2 for the Dominican Republic, and 1 for Uruguay).

Pan American Hockey Federation media release

Final line-up’s for Hockey 5s at the Port Moresby Pacific Games confirmed

Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu compete in the first semi-final of the day. (Photo Matai Akauola)

Play has concluded for today (Friday) in Port Moresby and the final line-up’s of the Hockey 5s event confirmed.

The first women’s semi-final of the day saw Papua New Guinea (PNG) take on Vanuatu and resulted in victory for PNG.   High fliers Fiji maintained their 100% win record beating Tonga and setting up a final clash with PNG tomorrow.

Vanuatu will play Tonga in the 3rd/4th match at 10am local time tomorrow morning and will be followed by Fiji against PNG at 1pm local time as they battle for 1st place.

PNG also recorded a win in the men’s competition in their match against Tonga today and set up a 3rd/4th match tomorrow against the Solomon Islands at 11.30am local time.

Vanuatu’s win today against the Solomon Islands ensured their place in the 1st / 2nd match against Fiji which promises to be an exciting encounter.  Fiji v Vanuatu will take place tomorrow at 2.30pm local time to conclude an action packed Hockey 5s event at the Games.

FIH site

Women's hockey go for gold

Shalveen Chand In Port Moresby

THE Fiji women's hockey team outclassed Tonga 21-1 to set up a showdown with Pacific Games host Papua New Guinea in the final.

Fiji had played Tonga in their first game and beat them 30-1 but had to play the fourth placed team to decide on the progression to final.

Fiji controlled the game, held possession, showed more skills and fitness.

Fiji coach Allison Southey said the team was prepared for the final against PNG.

"It will be a tough game against PNG. The last time we played we won 4-3 so the girls will have to be on top of their game," Southey said.

"The large PNG support was distracting to the girls last time. I will have a talk to the girls and tell them to be focused on the game only."

Captain Catherine Fabio said the game had provided them with a chance to sharpen their skills.

"We are ready for the final and that is the aim we came with. PNG will be a tough team to go up against but we too have the desire to win."

The Fiji Times

Eds, Badgers in pulsating Greenfields Elite Club opener

JONATHAN COOK at Riverside

Defending champs Western Province CC Badgers' (from left) Lloyd Norris-Jones, Ashlin Freddy, Wade Paton, goalscorer Ryan Crowe and captain Andrew Cronje in celebratory mood during the nail-biting 3-2 win over underdogs Old Edwardians in the Greenfields Elite Club Challenge at Riverside Sports Club in Durban Friday night. PHOTO GREG LABUSCAGNE

A festive Riverside Sports Club hockey crowd bore witness to a heart-stopping opener of the 2015 Greenfields Elite Club Challenge in Durban Friday night when defending champs Western Province CC Badgers edged event newcomers Old Edwardians of Johannesburg 3-2 with a goal after the final hooter.

On Pitch 2, Malik Old Albanians were shaded 2-1 by Kearsney HC, who got their goals via the trusty blade of Cameron Mackay (27th minute) and a Davyn Keuter penalty corner (46th) and the Pretoria team featured on the scoresheet with Malcolm Ratz’s 45th minute equaliser.

The late game saw goalmouth action at both ends, Wanderers Jockeys’ winner coming from Mike Heyink’s field goal in the 52nd minute. In just some of the action-packed plays, the Jockeys of Johannesburg’s Ricky West pulled off a magnificent save on the goalline while the Jockeys’ Beijing 2008 Olympian Tommy Hammond went agonisingly close with an effort that slid past the wrong side of the post.

In the early match on Pitch 1, determined underdogs Old Eds matched the star-studded Badgers throughout the match and were justifiably gutted at the final result. On the final whistle, Cape Town’s Badgers won a soft penalty corner (PC) and their international strike-force earned a disputed shot from the penalty spot in the aftermath, which was coolly put away by Rhett Halkett.

London 2012 Olympian Halkett bagged a brace in this pulsating encounter, his first coming three minutes from the end of the third quarter. The 42nd minute goal was the product of a sublime “German” variation set up by the outstanding Wade Paton from fellow Olympian Lloyd Norris-Jones’ pinpoint corner injection, and Halkett showed the presence of mind borne of vast experience to hold the ball before picking his spot.

The 13th minute opening goal of this action-packed affair was monogrammed by the composed Badgers defence and dominant midfield. It came via the Cape Town side’s second PC and arch poacher Ryan Crowe got the tip-in following a neat dummy by the castle at the top of the strike zone.

Outmatched as a group in terms of player reputation and experience, Eds put up a brilliant performance and their initial equaliser came in the minute immediately after the Crowe goal, hugely talented Nic Gonsalves serving the deliverance.

Eds conjured up a stunning second equaliser eight minutes from the end, the 52nd minute strike finished in style by Malcolm Arguile. But with every point and every goal counting for much in this round-robin battle royal, the classy clan of Badgers had the final, decisive, say.|

If Friday night presented an indication, Saturday should be a winner. Free entry at the magnificent Riverside Sports Club makes for a hockey extravaganza that’s worth the trip.


Friday - Turf 1 – WPCC 3 Old Edwardians 2. Turf 2 Malik Old Albanians 1 Kearsney HC 2. Turf 1 – Riverside HC 0 Wanderers Jockeys 1.

Saturday - 09h30 (turf 1) – Riverside HC v Malik Old Albanians; 09h30 (turf 2) – Kearsney HC v Old Edwardians; 11h30 (turf 1) – Wanderers Jockeys v WPCC Badgers; 16h30 (turf 1) – Malik Old Albanians v Old Edwardians; 18h00 (turf 1) – Kearsney HC v Wanderers Jockeys; 20h00 (turf 1) – Riverside HC v WPCC Badgers.

Sunday - 09h00 (turf 2) – 5th / 6th place playoff; 09h30 (turf 1) – 3rd / 4th place playoff; 11h15 (turf 1) – FINAL.

SA Hockey Association media release

Army gets the measure of Railways

K. Keerthivasan

The sluice gates opened up once Punjab and Sind Bank found its rhythm, and Karamjit Singh (right) helped himself to a goal, slotting in his team's third in a 4-1 win over SAIL. — PHOTO: M. VEDHAN

Army’s confident march continued as it overcame a robust challenge from Railways to bring up its second win on the trot.

Every match of the 89th all-India MCC-Murugappa Gold Cup hockey tournament at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium here on Friday was played in different weather conditions, and it all added to the charm.

Under heavy showers, Army XI had the measure of Indian Railways in winning 4-3 while Punjab & Sind Bank brooked no challenge from SAIL in a 4-1 victory in pleasant conditions.

In the first match of the day, Karnataka played out its second successive draw, sharing six goals with Namdhari XI in hot and humid conditions.

PSB took time to settle down to a rhythm. There was no push from the midfield, there were mis-passes aplenty and action was confined mostly to the middle of the pitch. But once PSB scored its first goal through Vikramjit Singh, whose drag-flick found the roof of the net, the unit started to work like a well-oiled machine.

Second win

Army’s confident march continued as it overcame a robust challenge from Railways to bring up its second win on the trot; not that it was easy, especially in the last five minutes of the match despite a two-goal cushion.

Railways forced two penalty corners but Army XI did well to thwart both. However, seconds before the hooter, Railways reduced the margin when Malak Singh scored off a penalty corner. However, it was too little too late.

Unlike the match against IOC the other day, it was a contest in which Karnataka had no business settling for shared honours. The biggest of Karnataka’s weaknesses so far in the tournament has been its frontline which has missed the easiest of chances at the goalmouth, and it stayed that way against Namdhari.

Leading 3-1, it allowed Namdhari to come back into the match. A wonderful drag-flick from Bhagat Singh into the roof of the goal reduced the margin. Without panicking, Karnataka kept attacking, but faltered at the finish many a time. The equaliser was a testament to Namdhari’s eagerness and alacrity. Inderpal Singh ran in front to try scoring off an aerial ball, but it went straight to Udampreet Singh, who slotted it home.

Namdhari had opened the account through a fine backhander from the edge of the circle by Gagandeep Singh early in the first half. After the equaliser by Sanjeev Dung Dung off a penalty corner, it was Karnataka which called the shots.

The results:

Pool A: Karnataka 3 (Thimanna 18 & 39, Sanjeev Dung Dung 22) drew with Namdhari XI 3 (Gagandeep Singh 6, Bhagat Singh 48, Udampreet Singh 59).

Pool B: Punjab & Sind Bank 4 (Vikramjit Singh 21, Gautham Pal Singh 33, Karamjit Singh 39, Pabhdeep Singh 44) bt SAIL 1 (Santosh Majhi 66); Army XI 4 (A.P. Siraju 7 & 10, Chandan Aind 29, Rajinesh Salaria 44) bt Indian Railways 3 (Mayank James 10 & 54, Malak Singh 69).

The Hindu

Indian junior hockey team eyes winning start

BREDA (The Netherlands): The Indian junior hockey team will look to make a positive start in the Volvo International Under-21 Tournament when it faces Germany here on Saturday.

After claiming the Sultan of Johor Cup title, India, coached by Harendra Singh, are confident of continuing their good work. Later, they beat Australia and New Zealand in the Test series in Brisbane in December last year.

"I am confident of a positive result and the team will put up a tough fight against Germany tomorrow. The boys will have to ensure that they attack and do not allow opponents to put pressure on us," chief coach Harendra said in a release on Friday.

"We have worked hard on rectifying the mistakes and focussing more on strategies."

The team is captained by promising midfielder Harjeet Singh, while talented defender Dipsan Tirkey will be the vice-captain. Apart from the duo, the performance of dynamic drag-flicker Harmanpreet Singh will be key for India.

"We have undergone rigorous training sessions, which have improved our game and helped us to perform as a unit against top teams. The team is very excited and confident to face Germany and we hope to start off on a good note with a victory," skipper Harjeet said ahead of the match.

After facing Germany, India will clash against Belgium, England, New Zealand and hosts The Netherlands.

The Times of India

India to clash with Germany in Volvo Invitational U-21 opener

NEW DELHI: Keeping in-line with their international experience, the Indian junior men's hockey team will look forward to make a positive start against Germany in the opening match of the Volvo Invitational U-21 (Men) 2015, to be played in Breda (Netherlands) on Friday.

Both the teams are full of talented players who are gaining momentum to dish out a commendable performance as they seem in no mood to give the initial opening to the other team.

The Indian junior men's team is eyeing yet another winning campaign in the tournament after claiming the Sultan of Johor Cup title second time in a row by defeating teams such as Australia, Great Britain and Pakistan in 2014.

After their winning campaign, they beat Australia and New Zealand again in the Test Series in Brisbane Australia in December 2014.

After facing Germany in the first match, the Harjeet Singh-led U-21 team will clash against Belgium, England, New Zealand and hosts The Netherlands and will surely aim to earn maximum points in the league matches.

Speaking ahead of their first clash against Germany, India Captain Harjeet Singh said, "Our team is looking forward to the first clash of the tournament and we will bring into play our strengths. We have undergone rigorous training sessions, which have improved our game and helped us to perform as a unit against top teams. The team is very excited and confident to face Germany and we hope to start off on a good note with a victory."

Anticipating a good performance against Germany, Coach Harendra Singh said, "I am confident of a positive result and the team will put up a tough fight against Germany tomorrow. The boys will have to ensure that they attack and do not allow opponents to put pressure on us. We have worked hard on rectifying the mistakes and focussing more on strategies."

The tournament is slated to be played between July 18-26.

The Times of India

Sam Lane looking to lift Future Black Sticks

Pictured: Sam Lane, courtesy Geoff Soper

The Future Black Sticks Men and Women are ready for their opening games at the Volvo Invitational Tournament in Breda, Netherlands.

The Future Black Sticks Men go up against the Netherlands in their first game at 3am Sunday (NZ time), while the Future Black Sticks Women face England first up at 1:15am on Monday (NZ time).

It’s a tournament which will see some of the world’s best Under 21 age group players against each other from 18-25 July.

We got in touch with Sam Lane, who plays club hockey for Southern United in the Canterbury Hockey competition, to ask him five quick fire questions.

You must be excited about getting started at the tournament, what has your experience been like over there so far?

Yeah I’m really looking forward to the first game. It’s been really interesting taking part in the Dutch culture and having to adjust to get used to their environment. It's been awesome seeing a country that loves hockey the way we love rugby, Sanjay Lala clearly being a fan favourite with countless signature proposals from the young spectators.

What are you looking forward to most?

I'm mostly looking forward to playing some of the best teams in the world. The opposition are teams that you dream about playing hockey against and I will be very interested to learn different skill sets from them. Also to represent New Zealand again is always a buzz that I thoroughly enjoy.

Have you had a chance to check out the turf yet? What’s it like?

We have had two turf trainings over here, both are very soft to run on. Turf two has been difficult for us Kiwis to adjust to as it is very slow, and restricts our skills such as sweep hitting and drag flicking a lot. The main turf is very quick and nice for all skill sets, however new treads have been added to Andrew Hastie's shopping list as it's very slippery!

What are your thoughts on your team?

The boys are all great lads, coming into the team and having players four and five years older than me who still have trust in me is an awesome feeling. One of our goals is to create a positive team culture driving towards the Junior World Cup next year, and the leadership group on this trip have done a great job so far on building positive vibes among the players and staff. I think the group has the potential to go far, which can be examined on this trip being put up against strong opposition in the coming week.

Who do you expect to be the toughest opposition?

We played the Belgium team in a shortened warm-up match earlier this week and we believe they are a team to look out for, however we know all teams here are placed amongst the in the world.


Hockey New Zealand Media release

Warsi makes Dinamo switch to Stroitel

Russian side Dinamo Stroitel have secured the signing of Imran Warsi for the upcoming season, switching to the Urals after seven seasons with Dinamo Kazan.

The 30-year-old former Pakistan international has previously made his mark on the EHL as a tough defender with a particularly powerful drag-flick.

Previously, he helped his country win gold at the South Asian Games and silver at the Goodwill Games in Australia.

He also participated in the Olympic Games in Beijing while, at 21, was recognised as the second player in the whole of Asia. During his time with Kazan, he scored over 100 goals in his first three seasons with the club and represents a strong addition to Stroitel.

The Ekaterineburg club played in their first EHL last season in Barcelona but missed out on a return for 2015/16.

Euro Hockey League media release

Kenya Police ready for Nakuru test in hockey league


Kenya Police's Felix Okoth (left) dribbles past Cyril Mandela of Strathmore Gladiators during their Vaisakhi Hockey tournament match on April 22, 2015 at City Park Stadium. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |   NATION MEDIA GROUP

Former champions Kenya Police will be aiming to keep up with league leaders Butali Sugar Warriors when they welcome Nakuru Club at City Park Stadium in one of the eight Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) league matches lined up this weekend.

Police sit second on the log, three points behind Butali who dislodged them from the summit after winning their two matches last weekend.

A win will see the law enforcers move level with defending champions on 21 points, but will still remain second since Butali have a superior goal difference having scored 30 goals in eight matches, 17 more than Police.

Police coach Kenneth Kaunda has urged his charges to complement their good play with more goals noting that goal difference may ultimately decide who wins this season’s title. The tactician is however wary of their opponents saying that they can “wreck their title ambitions” this season.

“They (Nakuru) are a good side, even though they are struggling to get results at the moment, we will not underestimate them as it might work against us. If we want to be champions we have to keep on winning all our remaining matches,” Kaunda told Nation Sport.

Police will look for inspiration from skipper Brian Saina who was influential in victories against Mvita XI and USIU-A in their last two league outings where he scored three goals.


Nakuru coach Tony Agesa is however bullish that his side can cause an upset and walk away with the three points but knows his charges will need to be on top of their game if they are to collect their third win of the season.

“We are rebuilding the team but I have faith in the players. We have played Police before and will therefore not be intimidated,” Agesa said.

Nakuru will Saturday afternoon take on Parkroad ahead of Sunday’s clash with Police while the latter take on Greensharks on Sunday.

Victory for Parkroad in both matches will move them into fourth place, a point behind third placed Strathmore Gladiators. In another clash on Saturday, Kenyatta University take on Greensharks with both sides desperate for the points as they look to claw their way up the table.

Sharks coach Nixon Nyangaga wants his players to be consistent if they are to finish in the top positions this season.

“We have been a bit reckless this season and we must up our game if we want to get good results. If we keep our shape we can collect six points this weekend,” he said.

In the women’s national league, Vikings play USIU Spartans on Saturday while Mount Kenya University will face Kenyatta University Titans on Sunday.



National women: MKU v Kenyatta- 12pm
National men: Kisumu Youngsters v TUK - 2pm
Premier men: Parkroad v Nakuru- 4pm, KU v Greensharks - 6pm


National women: JKUAT v USIU A – 9am
National men: Kisumu Youngsters v MKU – 11am
Premier men: Kenya Police v Nakuru - 1pm, Parkroad v Greensharks – 3pm

Daily Nation

Batra junks run-in reports

Hockey India president Narinder Batra has rubbished reports of him being involved in any confrontation with Dutchman Paul van Ass.

Amidst speculations about the future of Paul van Ass as coach of the Indian men’s hockey team, Hockey India president Narinder Batra has rubbished reports of him being involved in any confrontation with the Dutchman.

Batra had reportedly had a face-off with van Ass after India’s victory over Malaysia during the recent Hockey World League semifinals in Belgium.

“I don’t know who is spreading these stories. I was asked by the organising committee to meet the Indian team. On the ground, I spoke to Paul and asked if it was OK for me to talk to the players in Hindi and he was fine. We have organised so many international events, I know the protocol,” Batra said on Friday.

“Paul is yet to return to India and submit his report. I expect him to be at the camp when it begins on 19th. Only after we go through the reports can we take a decision. We are not averse to stringent measures but I can say there is no information on anyone quitting,” Batra said.

The Hindu

While you’re at it: Probe committee to look into financial corruption

PM directs panel investigating Hockey World League fiasco to also look into PHF affairs. PHOTO: AFP

KARACHI: The probe committee formed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for the hockey team’s failure to qualify for the Olympics will also investigate into financial corruption in the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) from July 23.

The committee blamed the PHF for the team’s poor performance in their first report submitted to the PM.

The PM has not taken any action on the report by the PM but the committee has been assigned an additional task to look for any financial corruption by the current PHF management. Many of the players have been complaining about a financial crisis in hockey and the team has missed several events due to a lack of finances despite the PHF being granted funds by different organisations.

The PHF had been asking for a Rs500-million grant from the government to run its proposed affairs. The Ministry of Inter-Provincial Coordination submitted a summary to the prime minister almost a year back with the recommendation to sanction an annual grant of Rs350 million to the PHF.

However, the premier, expressing reservations over the misuse of funds released to the PHF during the previous government, asked for an audit of PHF accounts before the release of fresh funds. Meanwhile, a committee formed by the PHF to investigate into the failure to qualify for the Olympics has met five players — captain Muhammad Imran, goalkeeper Imran Butt, Muhammad Waqas Sharif, Tousiq Arshad and Muhammad Rizwan Senior.

The committee has discussed the Olympics qualification failure with the players, who held the financial crisis responsible for the loss.

They also gave the same reasons to the prime minister’s committee, saying that the team should have been sent to Belgium a month before the event to get used to the conditions and play enough practice matches as they had not played much international hockey in recent months.

The Express Tribune

UBC seeking men's field hockey head coach

The University of British Columbia is searching for a new men's field hockey head coach.

The head coach is responsible for the coaching, management and coordination of the men’s field hockey program. The objectives are to provide opportunities for elite men’s field hockey players and develop them to their fullest potential as student-athletes.

For full details, click here.

Field Hockey Canada media release

Pushing the boundaries

Taking up a new sport can be both exciting and daunting, but when you are wheelchair-bound it becomes more of a challenge

When you are 14 years old, and spend most of your time in a wheelchair, then learning a new sport is a big undertaking. But Micaela Sarzosa has done just that.

The Chilean schoolgirl was born with Imperfect Osteogenesis, a disease that has a severe impact upon a sufferer’s mobility. Micaela explains: “I was born with this disease which weakens your bones because calcium is not absorbed normally. This means your bones break easily. I have used a wheelchair all of my life, but I am now beginning to learn how to stand-up and walk.”

Rather than let the disease beat her, Micaela is determined to do all she can to lead a normal and healthy life, which means incorporating exercise into her daily activities. “At first, I was going to participate in the Swimming Academy at my new school – the Amazing Grace English School of La Serena – this is an activity I knew about and had practiced before. But hockey is part of the curriculum at Amazing Grace and my teacher invited me to take part. I had never played before, but my friends were playing and the sport attracted me.”

The plucky schoolgirl is now a regular at the team practices and enjoying the game.

“I have been feeling really well since I took up hockey, and my family are happy for me to play, they can see how much good it does physically. I am completely aware of my limitations, but I know my inner strength. I would like to show others in my situation that this is possible. I have been integrated into hockey at my school and further integration in other sports is also possible.”

For now Micaela uses a standard wheelchair, but she hopes that as she develops her skills and improves at the game, she will be able to get a sport wheelchair. She explains that she cannot have an electric wheelchair as Chile is a seismic country, (making the power source prone to disruption), but a lightweight chair would make a big difference to her ability to manoeuvre and play the game at a higher speed.

“At the moment there is little help for people with special needs such as mine, but I hope through telling my story that more people will start to push their own physical boundaries and sport will become more accessible. I want to play this game for a long time and to the highest level possible. It would be great if it could be included in the Paralympics. In the meantime I will carry on playing and I also want to get into umpiring as well.”

FIH site

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