Over-50 Men's Squad Secures First U.S. Masters Victory of World Cup

June 08, 2014, 7:37 a.m. (ET)

Over-50 Men's Squad Secures First U.S. Masters Victory of World Cup

Today was a great day in the Netherlands for the USA Field Hockey teams. The U.S. Men’s Over-50 squad notched the first ever USA Masters victory as they defeated Egypt. Jeremy Roberts (Beltsville, M.D.), who had sat out the first two games with a broken thumb, found an orthopedic surgeon playing in the tournament who told him to cut off the cast and give it a try. This was great news for the U.S. as Roberts scored the first USA goal.  

Egypt played strong defense and the USA could only score once more before half-time. The second half was a different matter, with the USA starting to control the game. Ian Tapsall (Fairfield, Conn.) struck twice and Phil Danaher (Tatamy, Pa.) also slotted two home en route to a 9-0 final result. Warren Prestwich (Baltimore, M.D.) got the shut-out for the USA, with the back line which included Don Warner (Henrico, Va.), John Michalak (Camarillo, Calif.), Peter Jones (Stamford, Conn.), Brian Hope (Blandon, Pa.) and Amjad Zia (Nottingham, ENG) providing good coverage of the Egyptian attacks. The USA midfield took control in the second half, with Ian Wagge (Scottsdale, Az.), Manzar Iqbal (Darien, Conn.), Bob Khosla (Phoenix, Az.), Richard Hayden (Ashburn, Va.) and Andrew Dunning (Renton, UK) starting to combine very well.  The forward line of Joost Douwes (Stanwood, Wash.), Brian Spencer (Los Angeles, Calif.), Tapsall, Danaher, Roberts and Clarence Jennelle (Elverson, Pa.) put pressure on the Egyptian defense and took their chances well, especially in the second half. Eric McGinley (Arlington, Va.), after playing well in the first two games, was rested to be ready for the last group game with Wales that will decide if the USA over 50 can reach the quarter finals.

The USA Men's over 50 team rehydrated while watching on a giant TV as the USA women beat Germany 4-1 in Den Haag, coming very close to wrapping up a semi-final berth with one group game still to play. The USA Over-40 Men lost a heartbreaker to Ireland 1-0. The outcome marks their third one goal loss of the tournament, showing how well they have come together as a team, without quite being able to upset one of the masters' teams with much longer playing histories.

The USA Men's Masters Over-40 team put forth another great defensive effort and held Ireland to one goal, but the Americans could not find the back of the net and fell 1-0 for the second game in a row. The Irish were able to convert on a deflection in the circle in the 32nd minute to take the 1-0 lead, the only time that USA Player of the Match Steve Wagner (Philadelphia, Pa.) would be beat all game. That goal stood up at the end of regulation, sending Ireland to the quarterfinals over the USA.

The Americans stunted the Irish attack, as they were only able to get 10 shots on goal; Wagner made nine saves on the day to keep the Americans in the contest. The USA drew two offensive corners as national team player Binh Hoang drew one in the first half and 1996 Olympian Steve Van Randwijck (Amsterdam, NED) drew the second, but the Americans could not convert either opportunity into a goal. The stars and stripes had the run of the play in the second half, needing a goal to equalize, but the Irish goal was not solved. 

The loss sends the Americans into the consolation bracket where they are the #2 seed; they return to competition on Tuesday, 10 June. 

The USA Masters team members wish to thank USA Field Hockey, USMFHF, STX and TK for their much appreciated support, as well as their families for understanding their passion and desire to compete.

Team USA's O-50 Women took to the pitch to face off against Wales yesterday. The O-50 Women got on the board first with a goal by Christine Couteau (San Jose, Calif.) to score not only the first goal of the game, but also the first goal for the U.S. Over-50 team. USA went into halftime leading 1-0 but the Welch were extremely persistent and were rewarded with a goal to tie the game. The Welch quickly added another to take the lead. With 6 minutes to go USA pulled their goal keeper to add a field player only to have Wales increase their lead. The final was USA 1-4 Wales

The Women’s O-40 played the host country and the atmosphere was electric with tons of excited fans in the stands. The Dutch struck first to take the lead, but the U.S. maintained their structure well and had some good goal scoring chances. Team USA earned a penalty corner and converted on a shot from the top by Jill Reeve (Rumford, R.I.) which was deflected into to the top left corner by Denise Zelenak (Wilmington, Del.). The strong attack of the Dutch was too much for the U.S. and they netted a few more. As the O-50 team, the O-40 pulled the goal keeper but the Dutch capitalized. The final was USA 1-5 Netherlands.

Today, the Over-50 women lost to New Zealand today by the score of 8-0. It was 4-0 at half. The Kiwis had a great penalty corner unit which executed and scored five of their goals on penalty corners.

The Over-40 had a disappointing loss to the Russian team 3-1. Russia scored early in the game to take the lead. They extended their lead to 3-0 before the U.S. answered with a goal of their own. Kerry DeVries (Virginia Beach, Va.) scored the American goal but it wasn't enough to surmount the deficit.