All Three BC Girls Teams Advance to the Semi Finals
The success for the BC Girls continues as all three teams advanced to the semi-finals of the 2018 U18 National Championships.
After a hard fought battle with the BC Rams last night, the BC Stags finished day 1 with a 1-1 record, making their game against Alberta this morning a must-win in order to advance to the semis. Stags’ forward, Libby Hogg, scored in the first minute and they kept the lead for the rest of the game.
Their 2-0 victory over Alberta punched their ticket to the semi-final, where they will face the BC Lions.
Despite having a bit of a tough game this morning, the Rams squeaked out a 1-0 win over Ontario East to finish the round robin undefeated. The Rams goal scorer, Bronwen Rees-Wiedemann, said despite having a tough game today, they are happy with their position going into their semi-final against Ontario West.
“It was more of a relief than anything, because we really needed it,” explained Rees-Wiedemann. “Our coach, Bubli, said every team has a game like this where we can’t really finish so it’s good that ours has passed. Moving forward we want to play like we did yesterday, because that was probably the best we’ve ever played as a team.”
The BC Lions continue to impress, with an 11-1 victory over Quebec to clinch their berth in Thursday’s semi-final. Their final match against Ontario Central, a tight one which ended in a 2-1 Lions victory, put them first in their pool, set to face the BC Stags.
“I’m excited that we made the semis, that was a big goal of ours,” said Lions captain, Nora Struchtrup.
The Lions, the BC team with the least expectations on them coming into this tournament, have definitely turned some heads with their undefeated round robin performance.
“I think it’s going to be a huge advantage being the underdogs,” reflected Struchtrup. “I know we can do it if we play as a team. We’ve got a goal scoring team, I think Cam [Camryn Haines] scored her ninth goal in three games, it’s crazy. Anything is possible and I’m really excited to see where those games take us.”
BC Boys Rams Edge BC Lions to Advance to the Semi-finals
After the BC Lions had a disappointing round robin, finishing 4th in their pool with an 0-3 record, they left it all on the field in their quarter-final match with their provincial rivals, the BC Rams.
The Rams, who finished first in their pool and are among the favourites for a podium finish, got a bit of a scare from the Lions who, despite being underdogs coming in, believed they had it in them to take the Rams out of contention.
“We know them, we know their skill set, we’ve played against them before,” said BC Lions forward, Sahjun Sehmi. “I’m not saying it’s going to be easy, they’re easily probably the best team in the tournament, we know it’s going to be a tough battle.”
After Amraaz Dhillon gave the Rams an early lead off of a shortcorner, the Lions answered back with two quick goals late in the first half, giving them the advantage going into halftime.
The Rams poured on the pressure early in the second half and on the last play before the quarter break, managed to tie it up with yet another shortcorner goal by Dhillon.
“I felt like I owed it to my teammates because they put faith in me, and my coach Kevin Pereira, he’s the one who chose the flicking option on the shortcorners,” explained Dhillon. “I just have to thank my teammates for getting the corner and my coach for giving me the opportunity.”
A quick goal after the quarter break by Naman Sharma gave the Rams the lead, and despite a strong push by the Lions in the final minutes, the Rams were able to hold on for a 3-2 win. The Rams victory puts them in the 1:30 PM (EST) semi final against Ontario Central, a team that has won the last two U18 National Championships.
After winning both of their round robin games quite handily, Dhillon believes it is a positive for their team to have overcome some adversity in their quarter final match-up, as the competition heats up going into the playoff rounds.
“My friend and teammate Rowan Childs always says adversity sparks greater opportunity,” said Dhillon. “It really woke us up because we were down for a long time in that game and for us to build up and come back and win I think that shows how good of a team we are and how good we can be.”
All four BC semi-finals will take place between 11:30 AM and 3:00 PM EST. Follow @fieldhockeybc on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates throughout the day, and follow along for live scores at https://fhc.altiusrt.com/