The Western Australian Women’s Lacrosse team has returned to Western Australia as champions, winning the championship at the Singapore Open, held in Singapore, over the weekend. The Aussies defeated Japan 7-5 in 30-degree heat and 90-percent humidity to win the title.
The Australians were undefeated throughout the tournament and the playing group was confident going into the final. They knew the Japanese team were fast, hard-hitting and played a very physical game. They needed to adjust their game structure to suit the tough weather conditions.
The Japanese scored the first goal of the game. That was closely followed by one from Australia, shot by the team’s youngest player Holly Plummer, who is just 14 years old. Goal scoring opportunities were missed when the Western Australia team hit the goal post three times and the Japanese goalie was able to make some big saves. Rebecca Bowland Curtis scored the next goal for the Australians.
READ MORE: Check out the broadcasts from the recent Western Australia State League Grand Finals, held in Bayswater, Western Australia. Click here to see more!
Both teams played long periods in their attacking halves, but the Western Australian’s took the lead going into the halftime break with Shendelle Oliver scoring a goal in the final seconds of the first half to secure a 3-2 lead.
In the second half, Western Australia made changes to their starting line-up. Melanie Goddard and Olivia Robinson dominated the draw. The Australian’s also stepped up their defensive pressure in the midfield and defensive half causing multiple turnovers for Japan.
Kerry Allen made some very crucial saves for the team and Japan was unable to breakthrough the Australians’ defense. Late goals from Robinson and Goddard sealed the game for Western Australia.
Western Australian Captain Shendelle Oliver said, “I could not be prouder of this incredible group of women. We knew the final was going to be a tough one with the weather conditions and the Japanese turned up with their A-Game. They were physical and fast, but our midfielders dominated the centre draws and our defense kept applying incredible defensive pressure. We were patient and just kept taking our opportunity which saw us come out on top. This was definitely a team win.”
Wembley Lacrosse Club’s Olivia Robinson was awarded the games for Most Valuable Player award.
The traveling team was a mix of players from State League and Division 2 from four Western Australian clubs, and was led by captains Melanie Goddard and Shendelle Oliver.
Members of the Western Australian women’s lacrosse team expressed appreciation for their experience of getting to play teams from around the world.
Jessica Hegarty said, “As a Division 2 player I learned so much for playing alongside Australian and State League level players and I can’t wait to bring those skills back to my own team next season. I loved the supportive and friendly atmosphere at the stadium. We were all there for the same reason, to travel and play our hearts out and celebrate lacrosse internationally. Such good vibes all round.”
Amanda Plummer said, “Singapore Spectacular 2018 will be one to be remembered. From the happy and hard working tournament organizers to the players from all around the globe. We managed to squeeze in so much in a short amount of time and it felt like a week long tournament, not three days. Getting to know the different players within our own team was wonderful and both teaching and learning along the way, we will now all have life long memories to cherish. I was lucky enough to share the experience with my sister and daughter and will forever hold this close to my heart. An amazing trip and even more special bringing home the championship shield undefeated.”
For more information about Lacrosse in Western Australia, click here.