U.S. Masters Teams Continue Pool Play on Day 6 of WMH PACC

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BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – On Monday, December 11, five U.S. Masters Teams competed in the heat at Day 6 of the World Masters Hockey Pan American Continental Cup (PACC) in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The O-35 Women’s Masters Team picked up a big 7-0 shutout over Paraguay, while the O-35 Men secured a crucial tie against Argentina.

O-35 Men | USA (35) 3 – ARG (40) 3

In an important game, the U.S. O-35 Men’s Masters Team started off cautiously – going up 1-0 on an early goal from David De Perez (Prosper, Texas). It wouldn’t be until the second quarter that Argentina was able to equalize. A lapse in USA’s concentration saw Argentina get the go-ahead ahead late in the first half, giving the hosts a 2-1 lead going into halftime.

USA came out hungry in the second half. With a surge of energy, Becky Benny (Chandler, Ariz.) ran onto a pass and sent the ball into the cage to equalize for USA, 2-2. The fourth quarter was back-and-forth, and USA gave away a crucial penalty corner that put them behind 3-2 with just ten minutes to play. Late in the match USA rallied once again and found the equalizer off the stick of Malachi Mahan (Louisville, Ky.) with 2 minutes remaining in the game.

With the tie against Argentina, USA will qualify to play in the finals on Thursday afternoon.

O-50 Men | USA 0 – ARG 7

The U.S. O-50 Men’s Masters Team hung with top-seed Argentina for three periods before Los Leones put up four goals in the final quarter to push the final score to 7-0 at the 2023 WMH PACC. The Golden Wolves did not allow a field goal until the fourth quarter as Argentina’s three goals all came on set pieces, including two penalty corners and a third via a penalty stroke.

Argentina broke open the scoring with a Diego Saraceno direct shot on a penalty corner in the 6th minute. He was able to duplicate that effort with a second goal eight minutes later, doubling the deficit for USA. Los Leones used their eighth corner of the game, coming in the final minute of the half, to earn a stroke, which was converted by Marcos Pecchio in the 35th minute to send the teams into the halftime break with Argentina up 3-0.

The Golden Wolves came out strong in the third quarter, putting together a number of passes and gaining ground on Argentina’s half. USA was able to work the ball up to Ranjit Singh, who took the ball into the circle and fired a shot that just missed the far post. USA kept up the pressure, and the Stars and Stripes defense was able to keep Los Leones off the scoreboard for the third quarter.

In the fourth quarter, USA was able to keep the shutout going for an additional seven minutes before Argentina tallied again to bring their lead to 4-0. The host was able to get loose in the circle and Jorge Ivorra snuck a ball past USA goalkeeper Pradeep Menon, who made six saves on the day. Two minutes later Ivorra notched a second goal to push the margin to five. Goals by Bernardo Allen (67’) and Mario Dominguez (70’) made the final count 7-0 for the host side.

“Team USA fought valiantly for the first three quarters but eventually wilted in the fourth quarter under the intense Argentina heat,” stated team manager Alva Serrette.

The Golden Wolves continue action with a game against Chile at Rugby Club Gimnasia y Esgrima in Buenos Aires. Passback is at 2:30 p.m. ET. The match is the final pool play game for USA.

O-35 Women | USA 7 – PAR 0

The U.S. O-35 Women’s Masters Team faced Paraguay for the second time in pool play and secured a dazzling 7-0 victory. Flawlessly executing the team’s planned strategy, USA spent most of the game in Paraguay’s defensive end – earning goals from a mix of penalty corners and field play. The first goal of the match, tallied at just seven minutes in was by Amy Krompinger (Newtown, Conn.). Lindsey Heppner (Fredericksburg, Va.) notched one in the second quarter, giving USA a 2-0 lead into halftime.

Janelle Benner (Lititz, Pa.) and Livv Lopes (Bridgewater, N.J.) and Savannah DeVarney (Aptos, Calif.) put the red, white and blue up 4-0 after the third frame. In the fourth, Benner picked up a second goal while Krompinger rounded out the scoring with two more, making it a hat trick on the day in the 7-0 victory. Every teammate on the pitch had a hand in offensive play development from the USA’s relentless and connected attack.

O-40 Women | USA 1 – ARG 6

In a rematch against Argentina, the U.S. O-40 Women’s Masters Team again fell to their hosts. This time around, USA avoided a shutout with a goal in the final minute from Pattie Gillern (Medford, N.J.).

Argentina was on the board early, tallying a goal in the first minute. A second in the next quarter gave the hosts a 2-0 lead at halftime, which they doubled after the third quarter. Another pair of goals in the fourth and final frame looked like a 6-0 victory for Argentina, but Gillern prevented the shutout with a penalty corner goal for USA as time expired.

O-55 Women | USA (60) 1 – CAN (60) 2

The U.S. O-60 Women’s Masters Team just narrowly missed out on a win over the O-60 Canada squad after conceding two fourth quarter goals.

Barb Wachowiak (Hamburg, N.Y.) got USA on the board first with a penalty stroke goal at minute 10. USA would defend this early 1-0 lead for the first three quarters, outlasting three consecutive Canada penalty corners in the second frame and two in the third.

Competitive back-and-forth play would not allow a goal from either team until minute 58, when Canada secured their own penalty stroke goal. Tied at 1-1, USA conceded a field goal to Canada with just five minutes left to play, giving Canada a 2-1 lead. The red, white and blue would be unable to answer back, taking a 2-1 loss in a close game.

Click here to view USA's schedule. Games held on the Blue field will be live streamed on Argentina Hockey Masters Association's YouTube.

To view the 2023 WMH PACC Event Page, click here.