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ESB Electric Ireland FIH Champions Challenge I (Women)

Dublin, Ireland - June 18-26, 2011
Local time is 12:01am

Japan v United States

Final

# Info Date Teams Score Status Match Sheet
June 26th, 2011
24 Final 5:00pm Japan JPN - USA United States 3 - 2 (1 - 2) Final  

Match Report

Japan is the 2011 Electric Ireland FIH Champions Challenge 1 gold medalist after earning a come-from-behind 3-2 win against the United States.

Japan has used its speed and strength throughout the entire tournament to power into the finals and today was no different as the Japanese simply wore down the Americans to earn the gold medal. Ai Murukami was the key to victory. She scored on a second-half penalty stroke and sunk the gold medal-winning penalty corner shot with six minutes left in regulation. It was the first lead Japan held in the game.

USA started the game as the stronger team. Michelle Kasold set the tone early, giving the Americans a 1-0 advantage just three minutes into the game. USA controlled the ball for much the half and was rewarded with the 2-0 goal when Katie O’Donnell marched the ball into the net for the 2-0 lead.

Japan’s biggest strength was its quick counterattack and ultimately it gave the Japanese hope in the waning minutes of the first half when Akane Shibata fired in a lightning-quick shot to cut the U.S. lead in half must before the break.

Japan picked up their game a notch in the second half and spent more time in front of the U.S. net. An obstruction call on a shot gave Japan a penalty stroke. Murukami easily put in the ball, tying the game at two with 29 minutes to go.

Japan came close to getting the go-ahead goal seven minutes later when a penalty corner clanged off the post, but harmlessly bounced out of bounds. The Japanese steadily increased their pressure and played a very disciplined game and simply waited for an opportunity to present itself. That chance came when the ball bounced off an American defender’s foot, giving Japan the penalty corner they had been waiting for.

Japan entered the tournament as the favorite on paper with the highest FIH World Ranking place at #9. But both the Japanese and #13 USA struggled in the preliminary round, making today’s final an upset within the tournament as it pitted a fourth-seeded  team from the preliminary round (USA), against the third-seeded team (Japan).

ESP v SCO (3rd-4th Place)

POOL STANDINGS

Team Pld W D L GD Pts
Pool A
South Africa  RSA 3 1 2 0 4 5
Scotland  SCO 3 1 2 0 2 5
Japan  JPN 3 1 1 1 -3 4
United States  USA 3 0 1 2 -3 1
Pool B
Ireland  IRL 3 2 1 0 2 7
India  IND 3 1 1 1 4 4
Azerbaijan  AZE 3 1 0 2 -5 3
Spain  ESP 3 0 2 1 -1 2

MATCHES

Jun 26, 2011
IND India
Azerbaijan AZE
RSA South Africa
Ireland IRL
ESP Spain
Scotland SCO
JPN Japan
United States USA
Nov 22, 2014 12:01am
No matches to display
No matches to display
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