Bram Rietveld


Junior USMNT Returns from Holland Tour

18 photos

DEN HAGUE, Netherlands – The Junior U.S. Men’s National Team wrapped up a week of competition for the U-21 and U-18 squads in Den Hague, Netherlands, leaving with a plethora of experience. The tour was a crucial part of preparations and selections for the upcoming Junior Pan American Championship (JPAC), taking place June 26 to July 12 in Surrey, Canada.

“The tour to Holland was a great experience from so many angles,” said Pat Harris, U-21 USMNT Head Coach. “Holland has a very special hockey culture in that it has a very strong presence in the country. Many clubs have more than three hockey pitches, you can find generations playing at clubs, and there are countless competitive teams to plays against. I am sure the trip gave the team something to aspire to. The first step towards the Junior Pan Ams in June is complete and we are focused on the next phase when we will all meet again in May.”

The U-21 squad kicked off their tour with some tough competition, falling 6-0 to Ring Pass 1st on March 26 and 7-1 to AMVJ 1st on March 28. The next day, the team fell 3-2 to the HDM U-18 squad. Ending their tour on a high note, the U-21 USMNT defeated Alphen H1, 5-4, on March 31.

Play began on March 29 for the U-18 side, who started off with a 4-0 loss to ESV München, then followed up later that day with a narrow 2-1 defeat to Hilversum. It was another close 2-1 loss the next day, this time to HBR, which was followed by a 3-3 tie to Wycombe HC. Persevering through in their third match of the day, the U-18 claimed their first win of the tour – a 4-1 victory over HDM. The team wrapped up the tour the next day, falling 5-3 in a competitive battle against Westland.

“The U-18 Men’s Junior National Tour to Holland was an ideal learning experience,” said Pat Cota, U-18 USMNT Assistant Coach. “For many of our players, this was their first international tour and the combination of training, competition, and observing the EuroHockey League Final 8 facilitated defining the team’s style of play and establishing a solid base for the year ahead.”

The two young teams returned from the tour with valuable experience, taking full advantage of the chance to play internationally and explore the culture of field hockey abroad. Next up, the Junior USMNT will meet for training camp at the end of May in Moorpark, Calif., to continue preparing for the upcoming JPAC.

For more information about the Junior USMNT Holland Tour, visit the event page.