Late goals from Mariah Williams and Jodie Kenny confirmed Australia’s 2-1 comeback victory over now-eighth placed United States in the FIH Pro League in Sydney on Saturday night.
The US kicked off the scoring in the tense clash at Sydney Olympic Park through Danielle Grega, and retained their tenuous 1-nil lead for much of the clash.
The Hockeyroos couldn’t find a break through as they struggled to level the scores, until Kenny fired a penalty corner flick into the top-right corner of the net to draw the teams neck-and-neck.
From there, it was Williams that delivered Australia the key victory over the States, knocking in a back stick pass from Emily Chalker in the 52nd minute to put the Hockeyroos into the lead and confirm the team’s fourth regulation victory in the Pro League.
Despite the victory falling to the Aussies, Hockeyroos coach Paul Gaudoin was less than pleased with the opening movements of the clash.
“I thought we were sluggish at the start. We were creating chances but they were half-chances – the US didn’t have many but they scored,” he said.
“Going into the second half we needed a lift in our urgency and quality and I thought we got that. The tide turned in our favour, so it was good to get a couple of goals.”
Australia now prepare to return to Sydney next weekend, when they face Argentina (fourth) and New Zealand (sixth) on March 16 and 17 respectively.
Williams’ goal against the United States also puts her second on the top goalscoring leaderboard, sitting behind New Zealand’s Olivia Merry, who has netted five in four games. Dangerous forward Frédérique Matla has also scored three thus far.
Australia’s Savannah Fitzpatrick and Grace Stewart have both scored two.