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© Ady Kerry
The United States withstood its toughest test of the last 10 days, defeating Canada 10-5 in the gold medal game of the FIL Women’s World Cup on a rainy Saturday afternoon at Surrey Sports Park in Guildford, England.
The U.S. improved to 60-6-1 all-time in World Cup competition and clinched its eighth World Cup title, but not without getting all it could handle from Canada, which held the high-powered U.S. offense to its lowest output since an 8-7 win over Australia in the 2009 final.
Co-captain Sarah Bullard (Duke ‘11) scored a game-high three goals for the U.S. to earn Player of the Match honors. Bullard, a 10-year veteran of the U.S. national teams program, won her fourth gold medal, including an under-19 world championship in 2007 and senior World Cup titles in 2009 and 2013.
“It’s really indescribable. Even after being through this a few times before, it’s different with every single group,” Bullard said. “I’m proud of how my teammates handled it out there today and throughout this whole tournament.”
Asked how the titles compared to each other, Bullard responded, “They don’t. Every one is different, and it never gets old. This is the most talented team I’ve ever been a part of, but what’s more special is how selfless they are, how much we care and how we want to be there for each other.”
The U.S. averaged nearly 18 goals per game coming into Saturday’s final, including a 17-3 victory over Canada in pool play. But with Canada face-guarding star attacker Kayla Treanor (Syracuse ’16) — who was shut out after amassing a team-record 43 points in seven previous games — the U.S. relied more on its midfield. Along with Bullard, Marie McCool (North Carolina ’18) and Laura Zimmerman (North Carolina ’12) netted two goals apiece. Midfielders accounted for eight of 10 U.S. goals.
The U.S. outshot Canada 16-4 in the first half but led just 5-1 at halftime. Attacker Michelle Tumolo (Syracuse ’13) nearly made it a five-goal lead at the buzzer, launching the ball from about 75 yards out in the waning seconds of the first half. Canadian goalie Katie Donohoe (nine saves) lost track of the ball and it went in the goal, but after time had already expired.
It looked like the U.S. would pull away early in the second half. Zimmerman, McCool and Katie Schwarzmann (Maryland ’13) each scored in a span of 1 minute, 57 seconds to put the U.S. ahead 8-1.
But Canada answered with its own three-goal run, including two highlight-worthy finishes by Alie Jimerson, who pinged a free position off the pipe and in and then split a double team to score with 9:50 remaining to make it 8-4.
That’s the closest Canada would get, however. Zimmerman beat the Canadian press to score on an open goal with 4:09 remaining and then Bullard delivered the dagger, sweeping right and ripping a shot into the opposite corner to make it 10-4 with 2:09 remaining.
Canada’s Erica Evans, who was responsible for marking Treanor in the first half, scored her second goal of the second half with 1:25 left for the final margin.
The U.S. now turns its attention to The World Games, an international multi-sport event organized by the International World Games Association. Lacrosse makes its debut on the world stage Thursday in Wroclaw, Poland. Six countries are participating in the event, which is considered a stepping-stone on the path to Olympic recognition. Joining the U.S. in Wroclaw are host Poland, Canada, Australia, Great Britain and Japan.
U.S. Goals: Sarah Bullard 3, Marie McCool 2, Laura Zimmerman 2, Alex Aust 1, Katie Schwarzmann 1, Michelle Tumolo 1.
U.S. Assists: Taylor Cummings, 2, Alex Aust 1.
U.S. Goaltending: Devon Wills (4 saves, 5 GA, 60 min)
Canada Goals: Erica Evans 2, Alie Jimerson 2, Dana Dobbie 1.
Canada Assists: None.
Canada Goaltending: Katie Donohoe (9 saves, 10 GA, 60 min)
England Earns Bronze
England rallied from a four-goal second-half deficit and Megan Whittle (Maryland ’18) scored on a free position with 5.5 seconds remaining in double overtime to defeat Australia 10-9 in the bronze medal game of the FIL Women’s World Cup at Surrey Sports Park in Guildford, England.
England, the host country, medaled in the event for the first time since 2005, while Australia dropped to fourth place, falling short of a medal for the first time in its history.
Tewaaraton finalist Olivia Hompe (Princeton ’17) provided the heroics in regulation, scoring three goals in the final 10 minutes and tying the game on a backhanded shovel shot with her back to the goal with 2:22 remaining.
“To play for this team and this country in front of this crowd, it’s really a dream come true,” Hompe said. “This was the game of the whole tournament.”
After an impressive defensive stand to end the first overtime, England appeared to win the game on a goal by Jennifer Simpson, but officials ruled that Whittle was fouled on the feed, placing her on the center-right hash of the 8-meter arc. Whittle darted inside the Australia defense, scored over the right shoulder of Australian goalie Elizabeth Hinkes and waited for officials to deem her stick legal before leaping into the arms of Chloe Chan to celebrate.
Allyson Carey, USA
Taylor Cummings, USA
Dana Dobbie, CAN
Katie Donohoe, CAN
Megan Douty, USA
Erica Evans, CAN
Laura Merrifield, ENG
Hannah Nielsen, AUS
Jen Russell, USA
Kayla Treanor, USA
Michelle Tumolo, USA
Devon Wills, USA
World Cup Final Standings
1. United States
8. New Zealand
10. Czech Republic
11. Italy *
15. South Korea
18. Hong Kong
19. Switzerland *
20. Mexico *
21. Sweden *
22. China *
23. Spain *
24. Colombia *
25. Belgium *
* first-time participants
Support Team USA
Help support the U.S. women's national team as they look to bring home another gold medal. All donations in the month of July will be matched by USL Foundation board member Sylvester Miniter.