OTTAWA, ON – Canada earned its third-straight victory of the 2016 FIL U19 Men’s Lacrosse World Championship round robin thanks to a 17-3 win over Australia, a game that they controlled from start to finish. Their win, combined with a U.S. victory over the Iroquois Nationals later in the night, helped Canada advance directly into the semi-finals.
In what was their most well-rounded performance of the tournament thus far, the Canadians utilized a balanced offensive attack, as well as some great pressure while on defense, to control the pace of the game and hand Australia (1-2) their second loss.
Ryan Lanchbury (Burlington, Ont.) finished with a team-leading seven points (4 G, 3A), including an incredible no-look pass on Riley Curtis‘ first quarter goal. The other top point producers for the red-and-white were Jeff Teat (3 G, 2A), Dalton Follows (1 G, 2 A), Ben French (1 G, 2 A) and Ethan Walker (3 G).
On the defensive side of things, Canada was making a concerted effort to pressure their opponent in an effort to force them to move the ball quickly. The result was several ill-advised turnovers by the Aussies, including a few that came as a result of a 10-man ride, a tactic where the goalie leaves his crease to directly cover an offensive player.
“We knew that Australia, from watching them in their games so far, were a team that can have the ball for long stretches of time,” said head coach Taylor Wray (Edmonton, Alba.). “We felt like we needed to put some pressure on them and make it difficult for them to get the ball in their offensive zone, and that worked in our favour.”
British Columbia was well-represented on the score sheet, with Port Coquitlam’s Ryland Rees scoring his third goal of the tournament with the long pole and Victoria’s Marshal King adding two assists, one of which was flip pass that came off a nice juke move that helped draw the double team from the defense.
“We’re happy with the results,” added Wray. “As always, there’s still things that we can improve upon, but we’re starting to get better and starting to add some new elements to our offense and defense, and that’s what we were hoping to do throughout the round robin.”
Team Canada finished second in the Blue Division, receiving a bye directly into the semi-finals. Their next game will be played on July 14 at 7:30pm PST, with their opponent decided in one of tomorrow’s quarter-final tilts.