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USA Field Hockey

WNC Squads Round out Pool Play and Secure Crossover Match Ups

June 19, 2014, 11:23 a.m. (ET)

WNC Squads Round out Pool Play and Secure Crossover Match Ups

LANCASTER, Pa. – June 19, 2014 – Under sunny skies, athletes, coaches and umpires took to the pitch yesterday to round out the final day of pool play at the 2014 Women’s National Championship at Spooky Nook Sports in Lancaster, Pa. Coming into the day, USA Freedom led the leaderboard for Pool B with six points and 11 goals, while USA U21 was just barely above USA Blue in Pool A with four points and goal differential of five. Yesterday's matches set the stage for Friday’s crossover matches.

U21 and Red were the first squads onto the Spooky Nook Sports pitch yesterday morning, with Red hoping to earn its first three points of the event and U21 looking to pull further ahead in the standings. At the 10 minute mark, Nikki Parsley (Milford, Del.) connected with the backboard to give Red the first lead of the match and a 1-0 score which held through halftime. U21 came out strong in the second half and Anna Dessoye netted their first goal at minute 40. In the 55th minute, Moira Putsch (Media, Pa.) put U21 in the lead and just five minutes later, Izzy Delario (Rehobeth Beach, Del.) sealed the match with a goal of her own. U21 earned the three points with a 3-1 victory over Red.

Blue paired up against White in the second match of the day. While the turf saw much back and forth action, the scoreboard at halftime read 0-0. Katelyn Makovec, Hannah Prince (Gorham, Maine) and Kelsey Smithers (Suffolk, Va.) controlled the center of the field with structure and vocal reinforcement, allowing White to generate attacking moments and accelerate counter opportunities. Casey Dinardo (Virginia Beach, Va.) and Kelci Hromisin (Larksville, Pa.) fought through Blue defense to formulate key offensive movements. In the 49th minute, Erin McCoy (Lititz, Pa.) found the back of the cage for White to go up 1-0. Not ready to go down without a fight, Ainsley McAllister (Ann Arbor, Mich.) tied up the game for Blue in the 61st minute, finishing a penalty corner. Last minute offensive attacks were thwarted and the final whistle signaled a 1-1 draw for the match.

Next up, the Patriots and Courage faced off for seeding position in Pool B. After a flurry of activity in the Patriots defensive circle, Courage was awarded a penalty stroke in the 11th minute. Ali McEvoy (Gilbertsville, Pa.) struck gold with her form and put Courage up 1-0. Just four minutes later, Shelly Montgomery (Fairfax, Va.) added another tally for Courage. The Patriots came out fighting in the second half and Lisa McCarthy (Evanston, Ill.) put away a goal during a penalty corner to shrink the gap. Tough defense by both teams shut down scoring opportunities and Courage walked away with the 2-1 win.

Finally, Pool B’s top two teams, Freedom and the Eagles, took to the pitch. Freedom got on the board early when Molly Doyle (Havertown, Pa.) made a diving save to get the ball to Emily McCoy (Lititz, Pa.), who assisted  Ali Ahern (Getzville, N.Y.) in netting a goal in the 3rd minute. Just before halftime, Natalie Cafone (Fairfield, N.J.) showed off her sticks skills, beating several players along the baseline and fed the ball to Megan Plank (Glen Mills, Pa.) for one more score for Freedom to head into the break leading 2-0. The Eagles diligently fought back in the second half, but were unable to break through Freedom's staunch defense and the final score read 2-0 in favor of Freedom. Freedom's keepers Lizzy Millen (Whitehall, Pa.) and Maggie Olson (Wyndmoor, Pa.) made several crucial saves to maintain the shutout.

After a rest day today, Pool A’s top dog U21 will take on the Eagles on Friday, while the leader of Pool B, Freedom, faces Blue. White matches up against the Patriots and Red pairs up against Courage.

See the full schedule, results and tournament statistics here.

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