Both the men’s and women’s sections of Team England went undefeated through the tournament to eclipse their soccer compatriots and both take their respective European crowns.
The women’s team finished off and impressive tournament performance by beating 2008 champions Wales in the final. In a impressive first half display in the final they put 9 goals on the Welsh before the title holders mounted a comeback in the second half. England held their resolve to retain the title which they last held in 2004 with a 11 – 5 victory.
Undefeated in group and knockout play, England’s women produced some dominant performances throughout the tournament. Sophie Brett and Ruby Smith both netted 19 goals each to lead the team in scoring. England also fielded a large number of junior players who impressed with Liv Wimpenny, Charlotte Lytollis and Torz Anderson all taking top 10 scoring places on the team.
England men also dominated their 16-team competition and beat Germany 13-6 in the group stage before beating Finland and hosts the Netherlands in the knock-out phase on their way to the final in Amsterdam.
They triumphed after defeating a strong Ireland side 15-5 in front of 2,000 spectators in Amsterdam at the weekend.
Ady Bennett was the team’s top scorer with 22 goals while 19-year-old Jack Brook scored four in his debut international tournament.
“The competition was hard but we’re delighted to win a European Championship for England,” said head coach Matt Bagley. “Lacrosse is really taking off and the number of players at every age group has grown incredibly over the last few years.”
Both teams will be hoping to build on the success leading up the 2013 Women’s World Cup which will take place in Canada and the 2014 Men’s World Cup in Denver, USA.