Judging from its first two pre-tournament matches, Canada’s women’s field hockey team is in top form headed into next week’s Gryphon Hockey World League Round 2 in West Vancouver, British Columbia.
Canada’s women’s field hockey team picked up its second straight win against Chile, coming out on the positive side of a 1-0 decision at Rutledge Field Friday night.
North Vancouver’s Stephanie Norlander scored the game’s lone goal – which was her second in as many pre-tournament games – in the 12th minute and goalkeeper Rowan Harris kept a clean sheet in the winning effort.
“We came away with the win, but it was definitely a bit more of a battle, and credit to Chile, but it was good to get the win,” says Norlander.
After suffering a 3-1 loss on Wednesday, Chile seemed determined to put in a better effort from the outset of Friday’s match.
The Chileans picked up the first circle entry of the game, but a strong sequence of defensive stops from Sara McManus meant Canada got away unscathed.
Canada then began to control the ball, and subsequently the play.
In the 12th minute, midfielder Brienne Stairs picked up the ball just inside the Chile half and magically made her way through a group of Chilean players and into the circle before letting go a shot that went through the keeper and found Norlander on the goal, where she tapped the ball in for the game’s lone goal.
Canada had to endure playing shorthanded for two minutes later in the first half after being given a green card. And Rowan Harris was tested late in the half, but keep Chile at bay.
Canada picked up a corner at the 30th minute after more positive work from Stairs, but two attempts after the injection from Karli Johansen and McManus were blocked and deflected wide.
Chile had two corners of its own to begin the second half, but could not convert on either. The first redirected before hitting the post and staying out, while the second was redirected wide.
That would be the last and best of Chile’s chances to equalize as the Canadians finished strong, picking up chances of their own to extend the lead in the 51st minute on a Danielle Hennig drag flick that was stopped, and in the 60th minute when Kate Wright just missed an open Alex Thicke at the side of the Chilean goal.
The game ended at 1-0 and ended the pre-tournament games between Chile and Canada, with Canada winning both games by a combined score of 4-1.
The next time Chile and Canada will meet will be in the second pool match on April 2nd at the 2017 Gryphon Hockey World League Round 2 in West Vancouver.
“We’ve definitely got a lot of confidence going in,” adds Norlander. “But also, just knowing that Chile is going to be out for us when we play them in the tournament, so we’ve got to put it on even more.”
The Canadians will now face India in one final World League prep match on Sunday at 3:00pm at Rutledge Field, before turning the focus to World League Round 2 which begins on April 1st with a match against Mexico.
Gryphon Hockey World League Round 2 in West Vancouver has been made possible in part by the Government of Canada. Additionally, we would like to thank the Province of British Columbia and viaSport for their generous support of this project.
The West Vancouver Field Hockey Club is also proud partner of this event.