COLORADO SPRINGS, C.O. - The Women's National Championships continued today for day two of a week-long trial for selection to the USA Women's National Team. Competition remained high with athletes battling it out for a chance to shine in front of National Team Coaches.
Mid Atlantic and California took the field first this afternoon on the campus of American University in Washington, DC. Although California got on the boards first with two quick goals, Mid Atlantic was able to pick up the intensity late in the first half. Mid Atlantic scored four goals and would hold California scoreless for the remainder of the match. The final score was in favor of Mid Atlantic, 4-2.
California's first goal was scored by Kelly Dostal (Louisville, KY), who deflected a pass from Torrie Albini (Escondido, CA) into goal. California was successful at converting one of three penalty corners in the first half into a scoring opportunity with Albini firing a direct shot on net. The ball flew over Mid Atlantic's keeper who went down for the save. Now ahead 2-0, Mid Atlantic applied immediate pressure. Paige Selenski (Shavertown, Pa) put Mid Atlantic down by only one goal and Tara Puffenberger (Dallas, Pa) tied the match 2-2 going into the second half.
The strength of Mid Atlantic's defense left California unable to find the back of the net, while the intensity of Mid Atlantic's offense enabled two more goals to be scored before the end of the match. Nicole Fernandez (Tewksbury, Ma) found a scoring opportunity after a scurry in front of the net. The final goal was scored by Katie O’Donnell (Blue Bell, Pa), dodging California's keeper and finishing strong.
Game two of the day was played between New Jersey and the South. While New Jersey dominated the match statistically, it was the South that walked away victorious, 5-2. Katie Reinprecht (Perkasie, Pa) put New Jersey on the boards first, thirteen minutes into game play. Six minutes following, a penalty corner advantage for the South resulted in a goal scored by Melanie Brill (Oley, Pa). New Jersey's Katie Evans (Newtown Square, Pa) lobbed the ball over the South's goalie and Rachel Neufeld (Doylestown, Pa) was there to tip it in, giving New Jersey a one goal advantage going into halftime.
The South entered the second half with intensity, scoring three goals within eleven minutes of each other and finishing the game ahead of Mid Atlantic, 5-2. Michelle Kasold (Chapel Hill, NC) fired a shot from the top of the circle, making the match even 2-2. Four minutes later, a jaw dropping goal came from Jesse Gey (Greenlane, Pa) with a reverse chip shot straight to the far right corner of the cage. The South finished up their scoring streak, with a 2v1. Kasold found Melanie Brill (Fleetwood, Pa) wide open in front of the net.
The final match of the day resulted in a scoreless tie between New England and Pennsylvania. Neither team was able to put the ball in the net before the end of the match, making the final score 0-0. Shannon Taylor had a scoring opportunity late in the second half when a penalty stroke was awarded to Pennsylvania, but New England's keeper made a great save to keep the match even. A last attempt by New England to get on the boards, Lauren Pfeiffer (Mt. Laurel, NJ) sent an overhead ball down the field, but time ran out before her teammates could capitalize.
The current standings of the tournament is as follows: 1. South; 2. Pennsylvania; 3. Mid Atlantic; 4. New Jersey; 5. New England; 6. California. Tomorrow is a recovery day. Play will continue on Monday. The schedule is as follows with all times listed in local EST. Event news, results and photos will be posted to the website daily. Follow us on Twitter @Usafieldhockey for live updates of the matches.
Monday, May 23
2:30pm PA vs NJ
4:15pm California vs New England
6:00pm South vs Mid Atlantic
Tuesday, May 24
2:30pm New England vs South
4:15pm Mid Atlantic vs NJ
6:00pm California vs PA
Thursday, May 26
2:30pm Mid Atlantic vs New England
4:15pm South vs PA
6:00pm NJ vs California
Friday, May 27
2:00pm 5 vs 6
4:00pm 3 vs 4
For media inquiries, please contact Ashley Meunier, USA Field Hockey Communications Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at (719) 866-4365. Additional information regarding USA Field Hockey can be found online by visiting www.usafieldhockey.com.