Bronzed Aussies at Hawkes Bay
10 April 2017
HOCKEY: The Australian women's hockey team took to the pitch yesterday to battle it out for third position against the USA at the Hawkes Bay Cup, in Hastings New Zealand.
After an early goal by Australia, the USA equalised in the 59th minute leaving the game to be decided by a shoot-out. With shoot-out experience on their side, the Hockeyroos ultimately took out third place 3 – 2 against the USA in the shoot-out.
The fast first quarter saw a lot of endeavour from both teams, with the ball going up and down the field without any luck from either team. Eleven minutes into the second quarter and the Hockeyroos had their first real opportunity at goal with a penalty corner chance awarded, the shot was cleared by the USA defence and the score remained at nil all.
With just a minute to go in the first half, a nice piece of play from Kristina Bates and Gabi Nance left the ball with Kate Hanna who managed to flick the ball into the net right past USA goalkeeper Jackie Briggs, leaving the Hockeyroos with a 1 – nil lead at half time.
Three minutes into the second half and the USA had their first chance at a penalty corner, but the Australian defence was on point and Jordyn Holzberger sprinted the ball up into the Australian circle before it was intercepted.
The American’s narrowly missed equalising the score after a shot on goal at the end of the third quarter hit the top post of goal, with the score at the final break 1 – nil in favour of the Hockeyroos.
With less than two minutes to go in the game, the USA were up for a penalty corner. They missed the initial shot, however Caitlin Van Sickle tied the score at 1 all on the rebound, meaning the win would be decided by a shoot-out.
The USA went first in the shoot-out, with the result being decided in 9 shots after the Australian’s scored 3 to America’s 2 with one Australian player left to take a shot on goal.
Hockeyroos head coach Paul Gaudoin said: “I thought we had a really pleasing first half; we lost our way a little bit and reverted to some old habits in the second half. Chasing consistency over 60 minutes is something that we’ll really be working on in the next few months.
“It was a great learning tournament for us overall, we have a new style of play which we’re working on and everyone is working hard to learn that style and apply what we’ve talk about. So, overall it was a great first tournament as a new squad.”
The Hockeyroos will next compete in the World League Semi-final, in Brussels in June.
HOCKEYROOS 1 (1) (SO 3)
Kate Hanna 29 (FG)
USA 1 (0) (SO 2)
Caitlin Van Sickle 59 (PC)
Melissa Gonzalez (USA) – miss
Madi Ratcliffe (AUS) – goal
Michelle Vittese (USA) – miss
Gabi Nance (AUS) – goal
Erin Matson (USA) – goal
Steph Kershaw (AUS) - miss
Kathleen Sharkey (USA) – goal
Kristina Bates (AUS) – goal
Taylor West (USA) - miss