Junior USMNT Heats Up Training Camp with Friendly Win

Images Taken by Katherine Hennessy

July 07, 2019, 11:47 a.m. (ET)

LOOSDRECHT, The Netherlands - July 7, 2019 - The Junior U.S. Men's National Team has been hard at work in their scheduled training camp in The Netherlands. In between practice sessions this week, the team will also play in three friendly matches against local clubs. Their first one was on Saturday where USA used a solid opening quarter to gain an early lead before going on to win 4-1 against the Hilversum A1 squad at the Hilversumsche Mixed Hockey Club in Loosdrecht, The Netherlands.

"I am happy with the way the team played today," said Shannon Taylor, Junior USMNT Coach. "We’re continuing to progress in all areas from the last time we worked together. We’re looking to focus on some key areas in our next match."

Both teams shared possession and traded scoring chances in the opening minutes with back and forth action. Hilversum pressed and earned the first penalty corner of the game in the 6th minute but USA goalkeeper David Kristof (Darien, Conn.) made a well-anticipated clear on the shot. In turn, USA earned a corner in the 10th minute where Alex Curtis (London, United Kingdom) executed a textbook drag-flick for the 1-0 lead. In the last moments of the quarter, Wander Hommes (Westlake Village, Calif.) sent a clean shot from the top of the circle to add another goal for USA and close the first quarter 2-0.    


Hilversum pushed back in the second quarter but USA countered with more pressure. Unable to convert on two successive penalty corners in the 7th minute, USA was able to extend their lead when Liam Hawley (Ventura, Calif.) flicked the ball over the feet of the goalkeeper directly in front of the goal. Hilversum regrouped and earned their lone goal of the match on a penalty corner conversion in the 11th minute to make it 3-1. Curtis made one final attempt on goal before the half by taking the ball on the reverse at the left baseline and quickly put it up and over the Hilversum goalkeeper into the far side net, but the goal was not awarded due to an earlier foot infraction.    


The third quarter remained scoreless with both teams attacking with equal intensity. Both teams earned penalty corners but neither could convert as USA withstood the pressure and retained the lead moving into the fourth quarter.  

 

Hilversum earned a penalty corner in the first minute of the final frame of play but goalkeeper Amar Singh (San Jose, Calif.) stood tall and cleared the attempt. USA played the rebound quickly and earned a penalty corner 40 seconds later but were unable to convert. Possession remained in USA’s favor after the corner attempt and within the next minute, Hawley scored from the left baseline to make it 4-1. Hilversum continued to look for opportunities, earning a final corner with no result.

 

The Junior U.S. Men's National Team will continue their training tour with their next friendly match coming Monday, July 8. For more information regarding the Junior USMNT Holland Training Camp, click here.