Forty girls from the England U19 National Academy programme are currently on a tour to the USA in preparation for the 2018 U20 European Championships next month and next year’s 2019 Under 19 World Championships in Canada. Each day, members of the squad will be tracking their experiences on tour.
Day 8 – Anya, Eleanor, Rosie
Day two of Capital Cup began with an early start for both teams with a 6:30 breakfast ready to set off to the playing grounds for 7:15. Both teams were greeted by a downpour upon arrival which immediately gave us an advantage, as of course, we are used to this type of weather back home in England.
With the B team up first the girls completed their warm up before heading pitch side to play. The first game vs Red Devils was a good opportunity for the team to put everything we had worked on into practice and the team played with composure and intelligence to beat The Red Devils 14-1.
Next up was the As, who played Stick Benders. Despite tough, wet conditions the team played well to win 10-3. This meant that we were through to the semi-finals, playing against New Zealand at 8pm. After a delicious lunch and pool recovery session, we were excited and ready for another match in the evening.
At 11 the Bs faced Mainiax Black. This game proved to be tougher than their previous game forcing the girls to remain focussed throughout to work cohesively as a team all over the field resulting in a final score of 6-5.
This put us through to the quarter finals at 6pm that evening which meant we had time to go back to the hotel for refuelling and then a pool recovery session led by our fab physio Jess.
The B team’s quarterfinal game was tight, but the team dug deep and played with heart and determination to pull back from being 6-2 down at half time to win 12-7.
With the Bs advancing to the semifinals, the As took to the field against New Zealand to fight for their spot in the championship on Sunday. The match was nail biting as the score remained tight throughout the game with England only pulling a lead in the final few minutes to secure a 7-6 win.
Coming away with two more wins, both teams were ecstatic and ready for fight for the championship tomorrow.
Day 9 – Mae, Livy, Millie
Our last day was definitely one to remember with the Bs starting the day at 6:30am to depart for their 9am match against Lady Laxers.
They arrived at the new grass venue raring to go everyone supporting each other. The warm up was sufficient and positive with high adrenaline rushing through the team.
Just as the game began the rain came in, but it was nothing the team couldn’t handle. The team started on a high, scoring the first goal of the game and from then on continued to fight hard with the opposition putting on high amounts of pressure.
Despite losing 7-6, everyone came off with high spirits and after an incredible tour we have never felt closer and we couldn’t have asked for a more supportive team.
After winning our semi-finals yesterday we started the day off at 8:30am for a 11am final match against Ithaca. Having played 9 days of lacrosse, legs were tired, but spirits were high.
With a 4-1 score line at halftime, we fought hard until the very end, managing to close the gap to 7-6 at full time.
Despite the loss, we were all very pleased with our performance; we were also able to identify clear points to work on.
This tour has been an amazing experience; we’d like to thank all of the coaches who made this possible.