It was an action-packed Tuesday in Santiago, Chile. Canada’s men’s team took down Brazil 3-0, securing second in their pool and a spot in tomorrow’s semifinals. And the big story of the day was the Women’s National Team defeating Argentina 1-0 to top their pool and book a spot in the semifinals as well.
Argentina’s women’s team has won seven of the last eight JPAC events and Canada has never finished above them on either the men’s or women’s side in the history of the event. The landmark win puts Canada in a terrific position heading into the championship bracket. They face Chile in tomorrow’s semifinal. A win there, or a win in the bronze medal match will earn them a bid to the Junior World Cup.
Captain Sara Goodman scored the lone goal of Pool A with a seeing eye penalty corner rocket in the 30th minute. That goal stood as the game winner and sealed Canada’s fate for a semifinal date with the hosts. Canadian goalkeeper Lucy Wheeler has yet to allow a goal in the tournament. In an interview with PAHF following the win against Argentina, she said the team understands the magnitude of the win.
“We were coming in as the underdogs. This is a really big win for us and I’m just so proud of our team,” Wheeler said. “Now we’re top of our pool, we’re coming into the semifinals feeling strong.”
Canada defeats number-one seed Argentina and eliminates them from contention. Photos/Rodrigo Jaramillo/PAHF
On the Men’s side, Canada battled through the pool stages, finishing 2-1, with wins over Brazil and Mexico and a loss to the hosts, Chile. They will face Argentina in tomorrow’s semifinals. Argentina, the perennial tournament favourites rolled over their group defeating USA and Trinidad and Tobago. For the Canadian Young Bucks, it now becomes do-or-die. A win will secure a top-two finish and a berth to the Junior World Cup. A loss will eliminate Canada from World Cup contention.
It’s confirmed: following Chile’s win over Mexico, the Young Bucks are through to the next round 👊
— Field Hockey Canada (@FieldHockeyCan) August 24, 2021
Coach Indy Sehmbi spoke about the team’s resilience and ability to bounce back and take down Brazil to secure their semifinal spot.
“We knew this was going to be a difficult match. Brazil is a difficult team to break down” he said. “Our athletes did everything we asked them to do today, and I think it was a great match.”
Canada defeats Brazil in their final pool-play match.Photos/Rodrigo Jaramillo/PAHF