U.S. Men's National Team Begins Second Summer Series with Mexico

Aug. 01, 2014, 12:40 p.m. (ET)

U.S. Men’s National Team Begins Second Summer Series with Mexico

CHULA VISTA, Calif. – August 1, 2014 – After a successful series against Chile in mid-July and an intense summer training regimen, the U.S. Men’s National Team begins a second series against Mexico tomorrow at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif. The series will feature six matches over the course of eight days and several U.S. players who are vying to make the final selection to the U.S. Men’s Senior Squad.

“The Chile series provided us with a benchmark to improve upon as the summer continues,” said Head Coach Chris Clements. “We developed new tactical initiatives to allow us to be more dynamic through our midfield and now need to increase our finishing in the attacking third of the field.”

The relatively young U.S. squad went undefeated against the higher-ranked Chile squad. Three new players, Tom Barrett (Greensboro, N.C.), Ajaypal Singh (Hayward, Calif.) and Sean Cicchi (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) earned their first senior international caps with the national team. Ajai Dhadwal (Agoura Hills, Calif.) also notched his 50th cap with Team USA.

“The Chile series was a huge step in the right direction toward what we want to accomplish,” said U.S. Men’s National Team athlete Tyler Sundeen (Simi Valley, Calif.). “Chile has always been a tough team for us to beat, but we had confidence in each other and the mindset that we knew we would win every game if we went out there, did our job and played the way that we planned. Our preparation and mentality was better than it ever has been, and even though we didn't lose a game, we still knew we needed to improve and play more consistently. We weren't happy with just winning, we wanted to play the best we could and demanded better from each other when necessary.”

Beginning in early July, the U.S. Men’s National Team began a rigorous two-month regimen of training, practicing, lifting and competing. While the centralized training program has been in place for several months, this summer marks the first opportunity for the entire squad to be together day in and day out. The Mexico series will give Team USA the opportunity to build upon the success from Chile, work on new tactics and find more team cohesiveness.

“The development we have made so far this summer has been very encouraging,” said Sundeen. “We have a lot of guys who have never played together before or in an international match at all, but what’s really exciting to me is the dedication and effort that everyone has been putting in so we can make the most of our time together and really develop as a team both on and off the pitch. Chris Clements and some of the more experienced players have done a fantastic job of creating a whole new team culture of working really hard day in and day out and trying to make improvements every day, both on the field and in our everyday lives, so that we can become as good as we can truly be.”

While the U.S. is ranked ahead of Mexico in FIH World Rankings, the Mexican squad is full of strong athletes and brings a high-intensity style of play.

“Mexico has some quality players who are an attacking threat,” said Clements. “Our ability to contain their quick counter attacking style of play will be critical for our success in the upcoming series. They have a strong penalty corner, which in international hockey is critical for success and something that has aided them in the past. We are looking to make some key improvements from the Chile series as we continue to gain experience and develop as a program.”

“I think we are all very eager to play against Mexico and gain more experience on how they play and how we want to play against them,” said Sundeen. “We are expecting to continue our development and become more familiar with our teammates and the different styles of play we each have. Mexico will be a good test for us and we have many things we are focusing on to help us come out of the series a much better team.”

Team USA will take on Mexico August 2-9, with games falling on August 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, and 9, and all matches beginning at 10:45 a.m. PDT. Follow @USAFieldHockey on Twitter for live match updates and stay tuned to usafieldhockey.com for more #NoOffDays videos and Men’s National Team stories.

 Series Roster





 Kevin Barber

 Camarillo, Cali.


 Tom Barratt

 Greensboro, N.C.


 Michael Barminski

 Ventura, Cali.


 Sean Cicchi

 Thousand Oaks, Cali.


 Ajai Dhadwal

 Agoura Hills, Cali.


 Alex Grassi

 Brookeville, Md.


 William Holt

 Camarillo, Cali.


 Christian Linney

 San Diego, Cali.


 Mohan Gandhi

 Ventura, Cali.


 Tom McCarthy

 East Windsor, Conn.


 Johnny Orozco

 Ventura, Cali.


 Chris Rea

 San Diego, Cali.


 Spencer Reed

 Ventura, Cali.


 Ranjot Sangha

 Sacramento Cali.


 Adam Miller

 Panama City, Fla.


 Paul Singh

 Simi Valley, Cali.


 Tyler Sundeen

 Simi Valley, Cali.


Moritz Runzi

 Boston, Mass.