USA Field Hockey
Ventura Co. and East Coast dominate on Day 1 at JMNC
CHULA VISTA, CA – The opening day of the 2011 Junior Men’s National Championship was filled with long whistles by umpires; long whistles that indicate another goal in the back the cage, of course. An astounding twenty one tallies were totaled in just two matches.
First on the pitch at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista were the Red Devils of Ventura County matched against the San Francisco Gold. The Gold squad had a quick opportunity by gathering an interception and drawing a penalty corner in the first 40 seconds, but was unsuccessful in converting. The play went back and forth for the following minutes, prefacing what looked to be an evenly keeled match. However, Ventura found their groove and quickly reminded us all why they are the number one seed at this tournament. Skillful play and speedy passes put the Red Devils on the board in the 7th minute with a goal from Armit Beaty. Ranveer Kundi and Padro Zepeda added tallies to make the score 3-0 at the half.
The first minute of the second half gave the Red Devils even more momentum with another goal from Ranveer Kundi. Two minutes later, teammate Arshjot Khokhar scored to elevate the Ventura County lead to 5-0. A beautiful tip from Josh Schindler in the 49th minute and a push from Paul Sing in the 54th minute would give the Red Devils the 7-0 victory.
The second and final match of the day featured the East Coast Juniors paired with the San Diego Surfers. The Juniors took a note from the Red Devils and also fired up a high octane offense. Just six minutes into play, Austin Groeneveld finished after a scramble in front of the net to put the East Coast up, 1-0. San Diego found subtle opportunities, but were unable to create more. The stifling pressure from the Juniors added another tally in the 19th minute by Glenn Carr and again from Carr in the 21st to make it 3-0. That would open the flood gates for the East Coast. In the 14 minutes that ensued, Austin Groeneveld, Jaja Kentweell, Kenny Patrone and again Kentwell, would add notches to the scoreboard, sending the match to 7-0 at halftime.
The second half would be almost a mirror image. Just a minute into play, Austin Groeneveld added his third of the day. Followed by Jaja Kentwell who cracked his third and then fourth goals in the 45th and 47th minutes, respectively. San Diego could not sustain an attack to keep up with the Juniors. Two more goals from Glenn Carr, one from Mo Gandhi and another from Alexander Grassi would finalize the day with a 14-0 win for the East Coast.
Ventura’s Paul Sing and East Coast’s Mo Ghandi were named the “Men of the Match” for their exceptional performances. Combined, the Ventura Red Devils and East Coast Juniors allowed zero goals and recorded 21. As fate would have it, the two teams face off tomorrow at 1:00 PM to continue pool play. The San Francisco Gold and the San Diego Surfers will meet at 3:00 PM, both looking for their first win.
Match play continues tomorrow at 1:00 PM (PT). All games offer free admission and are played at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, California. A full tournament schedule can be seen below. For additional information, please visit www.usafieldhockey.com or check out www.twitter.com/usafieldhockey!
Thursday, July 7th
- Ventura County Red Devils vs East Coast Juniors @ 1:00PM
- San Francisco Gold vs San Diego Surfers @ 3:00PM
Friday, July 8th
- Rest Day
Saturday, July 9th
- Ventura County Red Devils vs San Diego Surfers @ 9:00 AM
- East Coast vs San Francisco Gold @ 11:00 AM
Sunday, July 10th
- Pool #3 vs Pool #4 @ 8:00 AM
- Pool #1 vs Pool #2 @ 10:00 AM - (Championship Match)