In a hard-fought women’s semifinal at the 2023 Pan American Games, Canada faced a world number 3 Argentine team that set the early pace with a series of penalty corners and relentless attacks. The first quarter ended with a nil-nil scoreline, as both teams sized each other up. Canada’s defense, led by players like Sara McManus, Anna Mollenhauer, and Karli Johansen, as well as standout goalkeeper Rowan Harris, stood strong against the Argentine onslaught. Madi Thompson’s exceptional number-one running was a feature of the Canadian penalty corner defense.
However, in the second quarter, Argentina broke through Canada’s defenses, netting two goals, one from a penalty corner and another on a back-hand field goal. Canada continued to defend stoutly, but Argentina managed to add another penalty corner goal in the third quarter. Argentina buttoned up the back-end and kept the pressure on Canada in the fourth quarter playing to a scoreless final 15. Despite their brave efforts, Canada ultimately fell to Argentina with a final score of 3-0. While the Canadian team showed great determination and solid defensive skills, they couldn’t generate enough offensive opportunities to level the scoreline. Team captain, Natalie Sourisseau commented on her team’s play today, noting that the team had flashes of brave and daring play, but wasn’t able to keep that going consistently throughout the match.
“There were moments where we really showed we could play, and I’m proud of the team for those moments,” she said. “But I think that needs to happen throughout the game and we need to have a little more confidence to continue to do that against a really good side. We’re taking this one game at a time. We’ll watch the video and come up with a good game plan, but it will be similar themes to today. Dare to take it on and leave it all out there on the field. There’s nothing to lose.”
Canada will now shift its focus to the bronze medal match, which will take place on Saturday. The team will face the loser of the tonight’s semifinal between Chile and the USA. Canadian field hockey fans can still look forward to an exciting contest as their team battles for a spot on the podium in the 2023 Pan American Games.
Canada and Argentina battle in the Pan Am semifinal. Photos/Yan Huckendubler.
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