The final game of the women’s four test clash turned out to be the best game of the series, with the crowd given a great attacking spectacle of modern hockey.
Both teams went toe to toe for the entire 70 minutes, with the USA coming out the clear victor with only seconds to spare.
“It was an impressive display for our young team, and I was impressed by our continual growth and progress from the first to the last match,” commented Coach Ian Rutledge.
Rutledge continued, “Despite the result, the players can leave Lancaster pleased with their continual improvement which culminated in one of our best performances to date.”
The defensive intensity and speedy counter attack of both teams, ensured that the full house was treated to an excellent match.
“We have been making progress on our attacking structure all week and today it was great to see that it came to life and we generated enough chances to win the match.”, said Rutledge.
The game hung the balance until the 61st minute, when the USA scored a field goal against the run of play, countering the Canadians who were pushing for the win.
Not to be deterred, the young Canadians pushed forward pressuring the experienced USA team, in search for the equalizer. A controversial call four minutes from the end, lead to a penalty corner that was well executed by the USA, taking the tension out of the match.
The USA would add one more goal, going coast to coast on the counter, as the clock died down, as the Canadians fought to halve the deficit.
“Today I was impressed by our teams desire to fight to the end. Even after the second goal, they searched and fought for the result. In those circumstances, it would have been easy to throw in the towel, but the girls kept fighting; showed great resilience and attacked for the result. This attitude and approach is becoming a habit and is going to serve us well over time” added Rutledge.
Commenting on the Series, Rutledge noted that playing the strong and experienced USA team was an ideal opponent to prepare the team for the rigors ahead in 2014 – “The USA are a clinical opponent. If you make mistakes you know about it on the scoreboard. I was impressed that we made progress in our own game as the series went on. While the results did not come, the performances will serve us well for the path ahead”.
The team, now takes a well earned week long break, before starting their preparation for the tour to England in late April and the climb to Glasgow in July.
Of significance, this match saw young midfield dynamo, Natalie Sourisseau achieved her 50th cap, an impressive achievement for a 21 year old.