USA 3 drew Australia 3
Goals: - USA - Tiffany Snow PS 43m FG 49m, Dina Rizzo PC 68m; Australia - Megan Rivers FG 51m, Sarah Taylor FG 58m, Ursula Ditton FG 61m
USFHA: Dina Rizzo scored the tying goal with two minutes remaining in the game as the USA Field Hockey women's national team salvaged a 3-3 draw against Australia at the National Training Center in Virginia Beach.
Rizzo's game-tying heroics came after the USA saw a 2-0 second half advantage evaporate into a 3-2 Australian lead with nine minutes remaining in the game.
'I'm please with the way we played, but I'm honestly disappointed with the result,' said USA coach Lee Bodimeade.
'I felt we were the best team on the field today. But it was a very good contest. Our plan was to go really hard at the Australians and that's what we did.'
After a scoreless first half, the USA got on the scoreboard when Tiffany Snow converted a penalty stroke to give the USA a 1-0 lead. The former NCAA Player of the Year at nearby Old Dominion Univ., Snow added a field goal six minutes later to up the USA advantage to 2-0.
The lead was short lived however as Megan Rivers scored the first of three consecutive Australia goals two minutes later to cut the lead to 2-1. Sarah Taylor tied the game for Australia on a field goal in the 58th minute before Ursula Ditton gave Australia its first lead of the game in the 61st minute.
Rizzo's goal in the final minutes gave the USA its first draw with the world's third ranked team since a 2-2 draw in Sydney in 1999. The United States women are currently rated 10th in the international rankings.
The series with Australia continues with game two on Sunday (7 pm) with game three scheduled for June 8 and the final game on June 11.
The USA is using the series to continue its preparations for the Rabobank Hockey Champions Challenge at Virginia Beach. One of international field hockey's premier events, the tournament will feature the national teams of England, Japan, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain and the USA.
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