TACARIGUA, Trinidad - April 5, 2016 - The U.S. U-21 Women's National Team's strong scoring performance at the Junior Women's Pan American Championship Quarterfinals against Barbados led them to an 11-0 win. Team USA will move on to play Chile in the Semifinals on Thursday, April 7 at 4 p.m. EST.
The game got off to a quick start with the forward line jumping into action off of the starting whistle. Margaux Paolino (Villanova, Pa.) and Sophia Tornetta (Plymouth Meeting, Pa.) found their way to the circle quickly and really set the tone for the half. As the momentum built, the goals started rolling in. The first from Paolino in the 9th minute after some nice eliminations and a smooth shot, resulted in a reward for the pressure she generate. The second goal came just two minutes later on a right side deflection by Amanda Magadan (Randolph, N.J.) off a penalty corner drag.Gab Major (Royersford, Pa.) got on the score sheet next after some quick circle eliminations and an impressive low-angle backhand shot resulted in a goal to make it USA 3, Barbados 0.
The forwards and midfielders kept the pressure on, generating goal number four after an intercept by Sophia Tornetta, who quickly passed it to Erin Matson (Chadds Ford, Pa.) who bumped the ball to Nicole Woods (Beverly, Mass.) for a one-time tip in. Ashley Hoffman (Mohnton, Pa.) made her presence known on the penalty corner unit with some quality drag flicks from the top. On a penalty corner opportunity, Hoffman drug the ball onto Barbados’ goalkeepers pads were Sophia Tornetta was there to grab the rebound and one-time it into the roof of the goal to make it USA 5, Barbados 0.
Hardly work offensive continued to persist as Matson grabbed her first goal of the game off a nice passing combination between her, Paolino and Laura Hurff (Newark, Del.). The first half ended when Hurff delivered a penalty corner sweep right to Magadan for the right side deflection into the goal. Halftime score, USA 7, Barbados 0.
The beginning of the second half brought with it a dip in tempo, but Team USA managed to energize themselves and their teammates. In the 50th minute, Woods put away goal number eight. Holding possession of the ball, Team USA was patient to work the ball from the back field into the midfield line to create different attacking lines. The movement and patience paid off as the U-21 USWNT earned multiple penalty corners.Matson earned her second goal of the game by finishing a pop shot from Magadan off a penalty corner rebound to make it USA 9, Barbados 0.
Ten minutes later Team USA capitalized on a penalty corner chance as Hurff put a strong low drag flick into the right hand corner. The scoring for the day was topped off when Tara Vittese (Cherry Hill, N.J.) eliminated a defender at the top of the circle to burry a backhand shot into the cage making the final score USA 11, Barbados 0.
"I think the game went well for us, obviously with a lot of goals in the first half," said Janneke Schopman, U-21 USWNT Head Coach. "I think in the second half, Barbados tried to slow the game down and created some fouls that slowed the game down even more. We had a bit of trouble dealing with that, but I said to the girls that it's fine. It's unusual for us to play Barbados. We're not use to their style of play. I'm happy we finished on a high note and scored a couple of goals and we're now moving on to the semifinal which was the goal for today."
Tomorrow is a much-deserved rest day before Team USA heads into the Semifinals. Team USA will pick-up play against Chile in the Semifinals on Thursday, April 7 at 4 p.m. local time. Follow usafieldhockey.com for more tournament updates. #UN1TED