Women’s National Team
Saturday, March 04, 2006
Hooper Double Sees Off Holland
Hooper celebrates the match opener
Photo: CSA/Dale MacMillan
Victoria, BC – On a sunny but brisk, wintry afternoon in Victoria, BC, Canada’s Women’s National Team, courtesy of a first half brace from Charmaine Hooper, overpowered their counterparts from the Netherlands by a score of 3:1.
The Canadians came out flying in the opening half and it didn’t take long for their three-pronged attack of Christine Sinclair, Charmaine Hooper and Rhian Wilkinson to test Marleen Wissink in the Dutch goal.
Seconds into the contest, Wissink was forced to kick out a Sophie Schmidt shot from inside the area that seemed destined for the back of the net but the Dutch keeper had positioned herself well for the shot.
But the Canadians would only need a little more than three minutes to breach the Dutch goal when a failed clearance was pounced on by Hooper inside the Dutch penalty area. The Chicago-based striker easily converted the opportunity, side-footing her shot past a helpless Wissink for her 66th goal for Canada.
Just when it started to look like Canada was going to grab another, the Dutch caught Canada on the break.
Gilanne Louwars streaked down the right flank and delivered a delightful ball across the face of the Canadian goal that eluded every Canadian defender and found an unmarked Shirley Smith at the back post. Smith took the chance on her first touch and slammed it past Erin McLeod who had no chance on the goal.
The teams, however, were deadlocked for a full two minutes.
A Rhian Wilkinson corner found Andrea Neil at the top of the area. Neil nodded her effort toward goal but an opportunistic Hooper flicked the header past Wissink for her second goal in just under 10 minutes
Both teams seemed to settle down after the frenzied opening although Canada still seemed the more dangerous of the two sides – always looking as though they could get around the back of the Dutch back-four when they wanted.
The Dutch on the other hand were typical in their buildup, but were forced backwards more often than naught through a combination of wind and tenacious Canadian pressure. But even when they managed to keep possession, they seemed to lack the creative guile to open up and threaten the Canadian defense.
The two teams returned from the break far tighter at the back, with the Canadians now playing into a strong wind.
It took just over twenty minutes of play in the second half before the Canadians had a real sight of goal when Hooper found herself on the penalty spot with only the Dutch keeper to beat but the striker was hurried and stabbed her shot wide of the right post.
But with just under twenty minutes to play, a long driven free-kick off the boot of second half substitute Brittany Timko sailed over the top of the Dutch defense, aimed toward the run of Sophie Schmidt who had ghosted in behind her defender near the right corner of the six yard box. The Abbotsford-native angled her header to perfection, skipping the ball past Wissink and into the side netting, stretching Canada’s lead to two and virtually eliminating any hope of a Dutch comeback
Minutes later, Kara Lang came within a whisker of making it four when her powerful free-kick from the top of the box whistled just past the upper right corner with Wissink rooted on her line.
The Canadians killed off the remainder of the match and walked off deserved winners.
“We played another solid game; maybe more solid than spectacular,” said Head Coach Even Pellerud following the victory.
“It was a very similar game to the match on Wednesday (in Vancouver), when we managed once again to put a lot of pressure on the Dutch team and could have scored more than we did. Perhaps we were more lively this afternoon and a bit more skillful but the game was also hindered somewhat by a very strong wind.”
“Overall the goal chances were exactly the same as our last game (10-1), which is quite remarkable, but in the end we won two matches against a Dutch team that perhaps was expecting to perform a bit better than they did.”
Saturday, March 4, 2006
Centennial Stadium, University of Victoria
Victoria, British Columbia
CANADA – 3 (2)
HOLLAND – 1 (1)
Goals: CANADA – Hooper 4, 10; Schmidt 71; HOLLAND – Smith 8
Cautions: CANADA – none; HOLLAND – Hogewoning 90+
Expulsions – none
Referee – Sandra Sarafini (USA); Assistant Referee 1 – Denise Robinson (CAN); Assistant Referee 2 – Charlene Douglas (CAN); Fourth Official – Mauricio Navarro (CAN)
Attendance – 4,500
CANADA: 22-McLeod, Erin; 2-Latham, Christine; 3-Schmidt, Sophie; 5-Neil, Andrea (17-Timko, Brittany, 61); 8-Matheson, Diana; 9-Franko, Martina; 10-Hooper, Charmaine; 11-Hermus, Randee (4-Andrews, Sasha, 75); 12-Sinclair, Christine (16-Thorlakson, Katie, 78); 13-Walsh, Amy (15-Kara Lang, 65); 14-Wilkinson, Rhian (7-Morneau, Isabelle, 85)
Head Coach: Even Pellerud (NOR)
Subs not used: 1-LeBlanc, Karina
HOLLAND: 1-Marleen Wissink (capt); 2-Dyanne Bito; 3-Liesbeth Migchelsen; 4-Marloes de Boer; 5-Petra Hogewoning; 6-Dionne Demarteau; 7-Gilanne Louwaars; 8-Annemieke Griffioen (14-Anouk Hoogendijk, 46); 9-Manon Melis; 10-Nicole Delies; 11-Shirley Smith; 18-Claudia v.d. Heiligenberg, 75)
Head Coach: Vera Poux (NED)
Subs not used: 12-Chavelli Stolk; 13-Felicienne Minnaar; 15-Sylvia Smit; 16-Loes Geurts; 17-Jennifer Voss;; 19-Dominique Vugts; 20-Karin Legemate