England defeated a resilient Wales to advance to the RWLC17 Semi-Finals and set up a meeting with world #1 USA tomorrow at 6pm.
A blistering first-half in which England’s attack fired on all cylinders saw the team take a 6-1 lead into half-time, an advantage they never let go of.
Sophie Brett put up a hat-trick as she lead the scoring in a potent England attacking line whose movement and accuracy caused Wales problems throughout.
Olivia Hompe, off the back of a hat-trick of her own against Canada, opened the scoring collecting a feed from Simpson.
After Wales equalised through Sophy Coombes-Roberts, England scored five unanswered goals as effective combinations sprung up all over the pitch.
Hompe, after her goal, was extremely effective playing from X dictating England’s play in providing multiple scoring opportunities first for Brett to get her opener, then reciprocating Simpson’s earlier assist.
Oxton teammates Brett and Charlotte Lytollis seemed to be in perfect sync as Lytollis twice found Brett in space to allow her to complete a first-half treble.
After the break, Wales began to drag themselves back into the game, Lloyd-Rout beginning to get some joy on the draw, and Laura Warren scoring after just 30 seconds.
Merrifield added to England’s tally soon after and the Hompe, Simpson combination fired again as England always kept Wales at bay until the latter stages.
It wasn’t until 15 minutes to go that Wales really turned the screw, Coombes-Roberts and Ellie Jones bringing Wales to within three as the tension in the stands reached its peak.
The crucial moment in the match seemed to come just as Wales were building a head of steam as Phoebe Smith scored for Wales but the goal was disallowed for an illegal stick and England got a let off.
After that, England slowed the game down, taking time out of the game and holding some long possessions to take the sting out of the game.
Torz Anderson then sealed the game for the English with a smart bit of trickery to completely deceive her marker and finish into the bottom corner and close the game out.
— English Lacrosse (@englacrosse) July 19, 2017
England will now face USA tomorrow at 6pm in the Semi-Final while Wales now go into the 5th/8th place play-off.