Feb. 23, 2016
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia field hockey sophomore midfielder Tara Vittese (Cherry Hill, N.J.) has been named to the final U.S. Junior National Team roster for the Junior Women’s Pan American Championship will be held in Tacarigua, Trinidad & Tobago, from March 30 – April 10, 2016.
Vittese, the 2015 Longstreth/NFHCA National Player of the Year and a two-time first-team All-American, has been a member of the U21 team since 2012, including leading the team in scoring at the 2013 Junior World Cup in Monchengladbach, Germany.
“The selection process started July 2015 with the Young Women’s High Performance tournament and the players were evaluated after each camp we had. Most important in the individual evaluation is the willingness to learn and their ability to improve and grow to ultimately become a national team player,” said Janneke Schopman, U-21 USWNT Head Coach. “Choosing the final 18 athletes from the group of 24 was difficult as the group and the individual players improved a lot during the last months. Some areas we focused on are executing basic skills under pressure, penalty corner execution (attack and defense), transition from attack to defense and vice versa, attack with speed and contest in defense.”
Team USA resides in Pool B with Bermuda, Canada, Mexico, Trinidad & Tobago as well as Venezuela. Pool A includes Argentina, Barbados, Chile, Guyana and Uruguay. The top-two finishers of the Women’s Pan American Championship earn berths to the prized Junior Women’s World Cup in Santiago, Chile, from November 23 – December 4, 2016.
The team will meet again in mid-March to battle Old Dominion and North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C.
Team USA’s 2016 Junior Pan American Championship Roster: Maddie Bacskai (Berwyn, Pa.), Kelsey Bing (Houston, Texas), Cat Caro (Martinsville, N.J.), Sarah Helgeson (Landisville, Pa.), Ashley Hoffman (Mohnton, Pa.), Laura Hurff (Newark, Del.), Amanda Magadan (Randolph, N.J.), Gab Major (Royersford, Pa.), Erin Matson(Chadds Ford, Pa.), Meghan Miller (Palmyra, Pa.), Lauren Moyer (York, Pa.), Margaux Paolino (Villanova, Pa.), Jenny Rizzo (Hershey, Pa.), Julianna Tornetta (Plymouth Meeting, Pa.), Sophia Tornetta (Plymouth Meeting, Pa.), Tara Vittese (Cherry Hill, N.J.), Nicole Woods (Beverly, Mass.), and Julia Young (Yorktown, Va.). Team USA’s reserve athletes are Carrie Hanks (Niskayuna, N.Y.) and Kristy Bernatchez (Belgrade, Maine).
Follow usafieldhockey.com for more information regarding the U.S. U-21 Women’s National Team.