MENDOZA, Argentina – September 28, 2013 – During Team USA’s Pan American Cup journey in Mendoza, Argentina, the nineteen-member squad displayed monumental growth and determination throughout the tournament. The championship match was no different. Although Argentina secured the final win with a 1-0 victory in front of a boisterous home crowd, Team USA played with intensity for the full game.
“I think it has been a good week for us,” said U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach, Craig Parnham.“Tonight’s game showed two teams playing some very nice hockey.”
"We have an ongoing rivalry with Argentina within international competition,” said U.S. Women's National Team member, Katie Reinprecht (Perkasie, Pa.). "The match wasn't any less intense than what we expected.”
From the umpire’s starting whistle, ball possession batted back and forth the entire length of the pitch. The U.S. and Argentina each earned equal scoring opportunities but both were unable to capitalize on any of them within the first half.
The second half of the match mirrored the first. Argentina was able to break the tie when they scored from the top of the circle past Alesha Widdall (Whitney Point, NY). As the final minutes counted down Argentina remained organized despite unyielding USA pressure.
“Argentina played well at times but we were able to put them under pressure throughout the match,” said Parnham. “I was disappointed not to be able to take an early opportunity in the match but overall I was pleased with the team’s performance tonight and throughout the tournament.”
The U.S. finished first in pool play of the Pan American Cup by defeating Mexico 6-0, Chile 5-1 and Uruguay 6-1 earning them a spot in the semi-final match versus Canada. Team USA played with energy and passion for the entire semi-final match earning the squad a 4-0 victory and a place in the final. For the fifth consecutive year, the U.S. met the host country, Argentina in the championship round. The U.S. made valiant efforts but the team was unable to convert scoring opportunities into goals.
With an impressive Pan American tournament campaign, Team USA has earned a coveted spot into the 2014 World Cup held in The Hague, Netherlands.
The U.S. Women’s National Team will begin the rigorous 22 hours of travel back to the states tomorrow. After a brief break from hockey, the athletes will continue their full-time training program at Spooky Nook Sports facility in Lancaster, Pa. The squad is eager to return to their new ‘home’ full-time at Spooky Nook.
"We haven't been able to have a definite training site over the past few months, so we are very excited to be able to call a place our own,” said Reinprecht. "We are thrilled to have the opportunity to develop as a team in one centralized location."