Three goals from USA forward Erin Matson secured a 5-1 bronze-medal win over Chile on Day 11 of the Pan American Games. The game also marked the 50th international for USA players Anna Dessoye and Julia Young.
The bronze medal match up between the USA and Chile was nothing short of entertaining as both teams scored within the opening three minutes of the game.
USA’s Lauren Moyer tallied in minute two as her back hand from nearly the baseline squeezed through Claudia Schuler’s pads and just barely crossed the line. Umpire Amber Church used her own video referral to double check the ball did in fact cross the line. Chile bounced back and on the next play Manuela Urroz sent a pass into the circle to a somehow wide open Consuela de las Heras. With expert finish de las Heras opened her stick face and swept the ball on a first-timer into the net to tie the game 1-1.
Chile’s Constanza Palma earned the first penalty corner of the game in the sixth minute but a low flick from Fernanda Villagran was cleared well by the left boot of keeper Kelsey Bing.
In the second quarter the USA netted a second goal, this time from Erin Matson. The speedy forward scored from nearly an identical spot as Moyer but her shot rippled the mesh as Schuler slid out to meet her. Chile paused after the goal to take a moment to regroup but no matter their work ethic they seemed to always be chasing.
In the 21st minute the Americans silenced the Chilean songs in the crowd with a third goal. Linnea Gonzales slipped the ball in to Kat Sharkey just above the stroke mark. The USA captain let go a hard blast to lift her team 3-1.
USA rode their momentum and tallied again as Ashley Hoffman did all the hard work to get the ball to the circle’s edge. A pass in to Amanda Magadan was bumped further in to a congested goal mouth but the quick hands of Matson allowed her to tap in a fourth goal for USA and a second for her in the game.
A good use of the video referral earned Chile a penalty corner in the 46th minute. Sofia Walbaum didn’t get enough on the shot and USA’s Dessoye made the stop and outlet for a quick USA counter-attack.
In the 52nd minute USA earned a penalty corner and with perfect execution Ashley Hoffman found Matson and a reverse-stick deflection lifted the USA up 5-1. Chile had a penalty corner within seconds of their fifth goal but Camila Caram’s back-hand shot sailed over the USA goal.
The Americans held Chile in their end until the final whistle and the 5-1 win puts the USA on the podium. The USA won the last two Pan American Games (2015 and 2011) and 2019 is the first time the USA hasn’t been in the final against Argentina since 1991.