Youth And Junior Women Finish Fifth And Sixth At 2019 IHF Trophy In Montreal

Nov. 04, 2019, 11:35 a.m. (ET)

IHF Trophy
The youth women earned a 3-2 record and finished in fifth place overall at the IHF Trophy tournament in Montreal.

USA Team Handball sent two teams to the IHF Trophy tournament in Montreal earlier this month, a women’s youth team for athletes born in 2002 or later, and a women’s junior team for athletes born in 2000 or later. The tournament was held October 15 - 20. 

Coached by Craig Rot and Kristina Alavanja, the youth women earned a 3-2 record and finished in fifth place overall. The junior women were coached by Jennifer Fithian and Greg Inahara. 


The youth women fell to Martinique 36-16 and Guadaloupe 40-16 during the first two matches of the tournament, then surged back to earn three consecutive wins against St. Kitts, 36-6, Puerto Rico, 27-17, and and Puerto Rico once again, 30-12, in the final match to earn fifth place. 

 

“I am really proud of our girls, who are very young, averaging 14.5 years in a tournament for 17 year olds," Rot said. "Most of our players are available for the next cycle, and some are available for the next two. This is a strong group with a bright future ahead of them."

 

The youth team's top scorers were Sif Christensen, Emma Ready, Eden Nesper and Kathleen Baker. 

 

“We finished strong, which is all I can ask for as a coach. By the time we put our pieces together, considering this was our first tournament as a team, the most important games were behind us," Rot said. "All three of the final day winners emerged from our group, winning gold, bronze and fifth place. Ours was a tough group. I would have liked to see what we could have done against the likes of Mexico and Canada in the end.”

 

Rot is working to put together a women’s youth tournament in January or February, which will hopefully bring together teams from the United States, Canada and Mexico. In the spring of 2020, the youth women will be competing again for a world championship spot at the women’s youth NACHC championships.

 

IHF Trophy
The youth women stand together before a game for the playing of the national anthem.

 

IHF Trophy
The U.S. youth women's team was coached by Craig Rot and Kristina Alavanja,

 

Youth Women's Roster

 

Name  Position  Club/Team
 BAKER Kathleen Backcourt, Wing Team Handball Academy, USA 
 CHRISTENSEN Sif Skov Backcourt, Pivot Hillerod Handball Club, Denmark 
 FAULKNER Hannah Pivot Team Handball Academy, USA
 SUMALLA Amanda Backcourt, Wing Team Handball Academy, USA 
 FUNK Allison Backcourt, Wing Team Handball Academy, USA 
 HAUFSCHILD Tracy Wing Team Handball Academy, USA 
 NWEAHE Zeina  Wing Team Handball Academy, USA
 LYONS Dakota Backcourt Team Handball Academy, USA 
 MALYSZ Julia  Goalkeeper  Tetra Team Handball Club, USA 
 MEITZLER Jenna Backcourt Team Handball Academy, USA 
 NESPER Eden  Backcourt, Wing TV Hannover-Bandstedt, Germany 
 PAUL Caitlin Backcourt, Wing Team Handball Academy, USA 
 READY Emma Backcourt Malvik Handballklubb, Norway 
 STAGNITO Gracie Backcourt, Wing  Team Handball Academy, USA