Once again, Team USA came close to knocking off the Iroquois Nationals at the 2019 World Indoor Lacrosse Championship. After a 12-10 loss in group play, Thursday’s semifinal seemed to be even closer with the teams playing to a 2-2 tie at the half. But the Iroquois outscored the USA 7-5 in the second half to escape with the win and move into the gold medal game vs Canada. The USA will face England for the bronze medal.
Since the tournament’s beginnings in 2003, Team USA has never defeated Canada or the Iroquois Nationals in this event and finished in third place each year. Canada has yet to taste defeat in this tournament, so the Iroquois will not only be trying to hand them their first loss, but will also be trying to capture gold for the first time.
The first two quarters the offense seemed to have its problems on both ends, but it was the solid defense and goaltending by Warren Hill (Iroquois) and Gowah Abrams (USA) that had the fans in attendance on the edge of their seats and keep the score knotted at two as the first half came to a close.
Connor Kelly and Joe Resetarits would score twice within 22 seconds to give USA a 4-2 in the third lead and had the fans talking upset as the momentum drastically swung, but the Iroquois Nationals would outscore USA 3-1 to tie the game at five with just under two minutes to go in the third. Matt Rambo gave Team USA the lead back just 20 seconds later and USA would lead 6-5 with only 15 minutes to play.
Adam Bomberry tied the game 22 seconds into the fourth, then Kyle Jackson and Cody Jamieson would score less than a minute apart to open up a two-goal advantage. But only being down by two with six minutes to go would be plenty of time on any other day. Gale Thorpe would score on the man advantage to reduce the lead to a goal with 4:50 left to go, but it was Warren Hill and the tough Iroquois defense that throwing up a wall to prevent any other scoring for team USA. Jordan Durston would score the final goal of the contest with 2:35 to go to send the Iroquois Nationals to another gold medal game with a 9-7 victory.
USA was only 2-7 on the man advantage, and you need to take advantage of that especially if you want to beat the Iroquois. Gowah Abrams stopped 27-36, while his counterpart Warren Hill stopped 42-49.
Cody Jamieson (2G/4A), Randy Staats (1G/3A) and Tehoka Nanticoke (2G/1A) led the way for the Iroquois.
USA was led by Joe Resetarits (2G/4A), Kieran McArdle (1G/4A) and Gale Thorpe (2G/2A).