Sunday 5 May 2019 | The Hockeyroos’ FIH Pro League top four hopes have been dented after they suffered a dramatic 3-1 shootout defeat to Argentina in front of a sell-out crowd in Buenos Aires on Sunday morning (AEST).
The match had ended 1-1 after 60 minutes, with both sides claiming a point, but Argentina’s shootout win earned them an additional bonus point, leaving them in second spot on the FIH Pro League standings and Australia in fourth.
The Hockeyroos went ahead early when Maddy Fitzpatrick powered in a second minute goal from a penalty corner, but the hosts returned fire from their own 18th minute short corner via Silvina d’Elia.
In a relatively even contest, both sides had four penalty corners while Argentina edged Australia with 15-12 circle entries. Argentina arguably had the better of the chances but couldn’t find a winner.
In the shootout, Edwina Bone, Rosie Malone and Brooke Peris – in her 150th cap – all failed with their attempts for Australia.
Hockeyroos keeper Rachael Lynch had denied both Lucina von der Heyde and Agostina Alonso, but Carla Rebecchi and Julieta Jankunas capitalised on Australia’s misses to clinch the bonus point.
Australia are next in action against world number 12 United States in Pennsylvania on Saturday morning AEST.
After March’s reverse fixture 3-1 home loss to Argentina in Sydney, the Hockeyroos burst out of the blocks with Savannah Fitzpatrick providing the injection for sister Maddy to flick home the second minute opener.
The chances were few and far between early on, with Argentina coming closest when Lynch saved well from a penalty corner in the fourth minute.
Las Leonas broke through for the leveller three minutes into the second quarter when d’Elia’s powerful drive from a short corner couldn’t be thwarted by outstretched Australia keeper Ash Wells.
Grace Stewart won Australia a PC late in the first half but Argentina keeper Maria Mutio denied Maddy Fitzpatrick this time.
The game came to life in the third period with Malone testing Mutio before Lynch denied Eugenia Trinchinetti and Micaela Retegui blasted wide from a golden chance.
Trinchinetti spurned a gilt-edged opportunity in the 42nd minute when Rebecchi’s scuffed effort from a short corner fell to her in front of goal with Lynch beaten. Jankunas also tested the Hockeyroos custodian.
Sophie Taylor’s last quarter flick was the best chance for either side in the final 15, before the game went to shootouts with Argentina prevailing.
Argentina 1 (d’Elia 18’) – 3 (d’Elia O, von der Heyde X, Alonso X, Rebecchi O, Jankunas O)
Australia 1 (M. Fitzpatrick 2’) – 1 (Bone X, Bates O, Malone X, Peris X)