Santiago (5 Dec, 2016): Argentina defeated three-time champions Netherlands 4-2 in the final of the 8th Women’s Junior World Cup in Santiago, Chile on Sunday.
The Argentinians claimed the title for the second time in the history of the event – precisely 23 years after their 1993 triumph in the city of Terrassa in Spain when they defeated Australia in the final than.
The victory was much celebrated by this South American nation following failures in the last two editions when they reached the final but lost to the Dutch. The Netherlands emerged champions in 1997 (Seongnam, Korea), 2009 (Boston, United States) and 2013 (Monchengladbach, Germany). They were aiming for a third consecutive gold medal here in Santiago.
Earlier in the day, Australia finished third following a 3-1 victory over Spain in penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw in regulation time. In other matches Germany defeated Belgium 4-3 to finish in fifth spot and England downed the United States 3-1 in the seventh-eighth play-off match.
The match began in a scrappy fashion and the first real scoring chance didn’t come until 15 minutes into the game when Netherlands midfielder Maxime Kerstholt batted the ball mid-air at Maria Rossetti in the Argentina goal. Maria dealt with it and just seconds later her Dutch counterpart was in action foiling a swift Argentine counter-attack.
The deadlock was broken when Imme van der Hoek shot past the Argentine goalkeeper to give Netherlands the lead but the goal did little to dent the cut and thrust of both teams as they continued to charge up and down the pitch.
Argentina equalised when Bianca Donati swept a penalty corner in the 27th minute. Shortly after there was no stopping Barbara Borgia as Argentina won a penalty corner on the stroke of half-time. The first shot was saved but Barbara was on hand to slam home and give her side a morale-boosting lead to take into the break.
This lead was extended after half-time when Maria Ortiz pounced on an opportunity to score again and move her team one step closer to the title.
However, Netherlands perseverance paid off in the 50th minute as Pien Sanders scored from a rebounded penalty corner to reduce the lead to just one goal. Maxime came close to scoring the equaliser for Netherlands from a penalty corner but her ferocious shot just flew wide of the post.
The Dutch continued to attack the Argentina circle but with players such as Agostina Alonso, Sofia Toccalino and Eugenia Trinchineti holding the fort, it seems almost impossible for Netherlands to find any openings.
An Argentina breakthrough led to a foul and subsequent penalty stroke. Agostina Gorzelany made no mistake as she made it 4-2 and the large numbers of Argentina supporters in the stands started the party before the final whistle blew.
Australia won bronze but they were made to sweat all the way by a skilful Spanish team who held the Oceania giants to a 1-1 draw and took this match to shootout. The Jillaroos held their nerve as they won the penalty shoot-out 3-1.
For Australia, this is the first medal at the Hockey Junior World Cup since 2001, when they also won bronze. Spain meanwhile secured their highest finish at this event in their history.
A hat-trick from Viktoria Huse and a commanding defensive performance from Hanna Granitzki and her fellow defenders meant Germany finished in fifth position.
The match got off on a fast pace between two of Europe’s finest. Belgium took the lead with just five minutes played through Stephanie Vanden-Borre. Viktoria Huse levelled score three minutes later through a penalty corner but Alice Weiker restored the Belgium lead in the 12th minute.
Viktoria scored her second at the start of the second half, but the tempo of the game slowed down. The deadlock was broken with another flurry of goals. Mathilde Raymakers put Belgium ahead in the 55th minute, then Viktoria scored her third – this time a penalty stroke – to bring the score to 3-3.
The winning goal came with four minutes of the match remaining through Maxi Marquardt. Her shot rifling across the face of the Belgium goal and put Germany ahead.
England won seventh place at the expense of a hard-working United States team. The 3-1 scoreline gave Craig Keegan’s team a bright finish to the end of their campaign.
The first half saw England move into the lead through a goal scored from open play by Esme Burge. England maintained that lead for just 10 minutes before Erin Matson evened things up with a well-taken penalty corner. After the half-time break, England came out the stronger and moved into the lead on the 41st minute when Lydia MacDonell scored a neat goal from open play.
The lead was extended when Charlotte Daly struck a penalty corner past the outstretched leg of Kelsey Bing.
- Argentina (gold); 2 Netherlands (silver); 3 Australia (bronze); 4 Spain; 5 Germany; 6 Belgium; 7 England; 8 United States of America ; 9 Japan; 10 China; 11 Chile; 12 Korea; 13 New Zealand; 14 South Africa; 15 France; 16 Zimbabwe.