In pool A, USA and the Netherlands staked their claim to the quarter-finals
Today's pool A matches both saw rain delays as a thunderstorm made playing impossible. On Pitch 2, the interruption benefitted the USA who came back to turn a 0-1 disadvantage into a 4-1 win over Korea with a supreme effort in the second half. Pitch 1 saw the Netherlands celebrating a massive 10-0 win over Ghana.
USA v Korea 4-1 (1-1)
The match between the USA and Korea started with slight advantages for the Asian representatives but the match was balanced for mc of the first half, with few opportunities at either end. Towards the end of the first 35 minutes, Cheon Eun Bi managed to set Korea ahead but the USA responded within a minute as Tara Vittese capped of a counterattack with the equalizer.
It was raining lightly at this stage, but when the teams came back after the break, the wind and rain picked up as lightning started to crisscross the darkgrey sky, and after only 1:12 minutes played, the teams returned to the halftime tents as the pitch became waterlogged. It was almost an hour until the match finally resumed, and the US girls clearly dealt better with the delay, as they came back with determination and verve.
They started pulling away halfway through the second half, when Anna Dessoye scored the USA's second, soon followed by Emma Bozek's conversion of a penalty corner rebound. Korea were struggling at this stage, the US girls had good control over the match, and Tara Vittese piled on another within a few minutes, scooping a penalty corner rebound over the line for the 4-1 final score.
When the final whistle sounded, the USA celebrated their three points enthusiastically, a well merited victory after their superior performance in the second half. In a pool with the Netherlands and Ghana, this could be a crucial victory on the way to the quarter-finals.
Voices after the match:
Steve Jennings, Coach USA: "I'm really proud of how our team played today, particularly in the second half where we scored a lot of goals. It feels really good to start up the tournament this way. It's phenomenal to be here, we're really excited to be here and to start right up with this win. We think game by game and always want to win. We're just trying to do our best in every match."
The Netherlands v Ghana 10-0 (2-0)
The Netherlands started their Junior World Cup campaign with a massive 10-0 win over Ghana. Dutch top scorer Lieke van Wijk contributed five goals. Although her team was clearly defeated, Ghana’s goalkeeper Joana Adjei played an outstanding match.
In their first-ever Junior World Cup appearance Ghana had to take on the reigning World Champions from the Netherlands. Although facing one of the strongest opponents in the tournament, Ghana started brilliantly. They managed to keep the Dutch from scoring on most occasions in the first half. Especially goalkeeper Adjei showed some tremendous saves to keep her team in this match.
However, Dutch Lieke van Wijk opened the scoring in the 10th minute when her penalty corner drag-flick hit the net underneath the crossbar. With 18:42 minutes remaining in the first half the match was interrupted due to heavy rainfall and thunderstorm occurring in Mönchenglachbach.
Play resumed after a break lasting almost 90 minutes. The Netherlands could have extended their lead but they failed to score from a series of penalty corners. It took them up to the 26th minute to double their lead. Maria Verschoor brought the ball into the circle where Lisanne de Lange, already expecting the ball at the far post, tipped it into the goal. The halftime score was 2-0.
In the second half Ghana struggled to cope with the pressure and the high pace of the Dutch. Although Ghana’s goalkeeper Adjei was still saving a lot of attempts, the Dutch started extending their lead. First, Lisa Scheerlinck added another field goal, then de Lange converted their 11th penalty corner to lift the result to 4-0.
Afterwards van Wijk made a hat-trick scoring from two penalty strokes and one more penalty corner extending the Dutch lead to 7-0. 8-0 and 9-0 goals came off penalty corners each with Scheerlinck and team captain Renske Siersema being the scorers. Dutch top scorer van Wijk added another one when she converted her third out of four penalty strokes securing the final result of 10-0.
Voices after the match:
Raoul Ehren, Coach Netherlands: "We started a little bit nervous, the second half was much better from our side. We made more goals. This is a great event and a big experience for the girls. Normally, we travel for an event like a World Cup and now it's very close to home, so it's a good opportunity for a lot of people from Holland to watch the matches."Edmund Odametey, Coach Ghana: "This is the first time and experience for the girls in an international tournament like this. Maybe we look at the next match an let's see if they can pep themselves up, to push themselves a little to play better. It's a game and it's past and gone and we focus on the next match. We are not top class, it's an experience for us. We want to play. We're learning." Back