April 29, 1997

United States Reigns Over England, 7-5

Edogawa, Japan -- The 1993 World Champion United States Women's Lacrosse Team turned back a gritty English squad with three goals in the final six minutes of the first half and hung on to defeat the English 7-5. In a rematch of the 1993 gold medal game, won by the Americans 4-1, the USA battled back from an early 2-1 deficit to take control of the game and win their second round-robin match.

For the third match in a row, the first goal was scored by the United States. Thirty-seven seconds into the match, Joanne Connelly (Penn State 1996 /Fairfield, Conn.) took a feed from Kelly Amonte (Maryland 1996, Thayer Academy/ Hingham, Mass.) and stuck it in the English net for the early 1-0 lead. But the English answered with two goals and kept the US scoreless for 20 minutes to take a 2-1 lead.

The Americans came back as Bean Scott (Maryland 1994/West Chester, Pa.) took a Sarah Nelson (Harvard 1990, Topsfield, Mass) pass to the cage with just under six minutes remaining to knot the score at 2. The USA retook the lead at 3-2 on Amonte's goal with just over a minute left. Game-MVP Cherie Greer (Virginia 1994, Harriton H.S./Narbeth, Pa.) asserted herself and the American cause with a goal with two ticks on the clock to put the USA up at halftime 4-2.

The Americans opened the scoring in the second as Kathleen Geiger (Temple 1986/Drexel Hill, Pa.) found the back of the English net one minute into the period. The English ended their scoring lapse with a goal at the 15:15 mark, but Greer answered for the US as she took a Danielle Gallagher (William & Mary 1989,Manhasset H.S./Manhasset, N.Y.) pass in to push the margin back to three at 6-3.

The English staged a little rally with two goals in two minutes and brought the game to 6-5 with just over five minutes remaining, but Michele Uhlfelder (Maryland, 1991/Hampton, Va.) added the insurance for the Americans with a goal off an assist from Amonte.

Sue Heether (Loyola 1990/St. Mary's City, Md.), who played the whole 50 minutes in goal, made one of her five saves with just 30 seconds to go to preserve the win.

"This was a huge win for us," commented assistant coach Heather Dow (Virginia 1982/ Charlottesville, Va.). "It puts us back in control of our own destiny. Our players now take a well-deserved break on Wednesday and then we need to pick up the pace in our upcoming games (Japan, Scotland, Canada) should advancement to the gold medal round come down to goal differential."

The USA rests today and then faces the host Japanese on May 1.

                 1   2   Final
England          2   3   5 (1-1)
United States    4   3   7 (2-1)
Scoring:         Greer 2, Connelly, Scott, Amonte, Geiger, Uhlfelder
Assists:         Amonte 2, Nelson, Gallagher
Shots:           USA:24; ENG: 11
Ground Balls:    USA: 16; ENG: 7
Interceptions:   USA: 7; ENG: 3
Turnovers:       USA: 12;ENG: 21
Draws:           USA: 5; ENG: 8
Saves:           USA: 6 (Heether 6)