On the back of a Shannon Taylor goal, the U.S. women's Olympic field hockey team upset world No. 2 and defending World Cup champions Argentina on Tuesday, July 31.
Taylor's 28th-minute goal offers a repeat of history. Last October Taylor--an SU alumna--scored the second U.S. goal in a 4-2 win over then-No. 1 Argentina in the gold medal match of the Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico. Tuesday's strike proved to be the game-winner, though, and revived Team USA's once-dwindling medal hopes.
After a 2-1 loss against Germany on the first day of group play, the Americans faced an uphill battle to advance. A place in the semifinals requires a top-two finish in round-robin group play. A win is worth three points, a draw is worth one and a loss earns zero.
Unfortunately for Taylor and her teammates, they ended the Australia match with the latter. Anna Flanagan buried a 33rd-minute penalty corner. The loss leaves Team USA staring up at Group B leaders New Zealand, Australia, and Germany. All three countries are on six points while Argentina and Team USA have three. South Africa sits in last place with zero points.
Now the Americans’ medal
aspirations demand wins against New Zealand and South Africa accompanied
by some slip-ups by Germany and Australia. New Zealand plays Argentina at 4:15 p.m. today, Aug. 2.
You can watch No. 10 Team USA take on No. 6 New Zealand at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 4, on NBC Sports Network.