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USA Women’s Goalball Takes SILVER In Pajulahti Games

Posted January 25, 2016  Goalball | National Goalball Teams

By: Amanda Weldon

On Sunday, USA’s Women’s Goalball Team took SILVER in a close draw against Russia, ending in a shootout. The score was 2-2 in regular time, Russia barely overcoming USA with a final score of 6-4 in overtime.

The following athletes traveled to Finland to compete:

  • Jen Armbruster (Portland, Ore./Portland, Ore.)
  • Lisa Czechowski (Boonton, N.J./Tucson, Ariz.)
  • Amanda Dennis (Peachtree City, Ga./Peachtree City, Ga.)
  • Asya Miller (Leeper,Mich./Portland, Ore.)
  • Eliana Mason (Portland, Ore./Portland, Ore.)
  • Marybai Huking (Plain City, Ut./Plain City, Ut.)
  • Head Coach: Ken Armbruster  (Colorado Springs, CO./Colorado Springs, CO.)
  • Assistant Coach: Jake Czechowski (Tucson, AZ./Tucson, AZ.)

With a tight match up, Russia scored against Asya Miller and Lisa Czechowski, but quickly turned around when Jen Armbruster blocked Russia’s shot and fired back to tie the game 2-2.

“I was more nervous to play Russia in round robin play than in the championship game because we hadn’t played against Russia in a long time,” said Miller. USA competed in seven games during the tournament, with a win of 2-1 in the round robin game against Russia. The tournament included six teams that have already qualified for the Paralympic Games.

Although the game ended at 6-4 to Russia, Miller believed it to be “good for the young ones to get the shootout experience now” as they prepare for Rio.

“We got to try out some different combinations throughout the tournament and really work on mistakes we have had in previous tournaments leading up to this one,” said Amanda Dennis.

At this time, the women’s team is in full gear as they prepare for the Rio Games coming up this September. The team uses tournaments like this as a step towards their objectives.

“This season is about working on our weaknesses and developing our strengths and playing in this tournament is giving us a lot of experience against our competition,” said Dennis. “We know that all the teams are going to play their best in Rio, and we’re looking to show them what our team is all about.”

USA’s Women’s Goalball Team will play again at the Lady Malmo Intercup in Sweden, where they will continue to work on their goals as they get ready to take the world stage later this year.