TURKU, Finland - For the first time in international field competition, the Iroquois Nationals have defeated a United States lacrosse team despite a big day by UNC incoming freshman Michael Tagliaferri. The Iroquois under-19 team beat the U.S., 15-13, in a pool play game at the Federation of International Lacrosse U19 World Championships on Tuesday in Finland.
Tagliaferri had five points on four goals and an assist and two of his goals came in a fourth quarter rally by the American side. The Iroquois Nationals pulled off the upset despite having only one assisted goal amongst their 15 tallies.
"It's pretty amazing," Iroquois coach Freeman "Boss" Bucktooth said. "The guys came out to play and showed what they could do. ... We've got a lot of talent on the team and a great coaching staff. We put everything together. We'll walk away with a win [over] the USA team at any time."
The U.S. led 5-2 after the first quarter and 8-6 at halftime, but the Iroquois rallied to take a 9-8 lead less than four minutes into the second half and never trailed the rest of the game. The teams were tied at 11 and 13 in the fourth quarter before Hank Delisle scored the go-ahead goal with 5:35 left.
The U.S. had a man-up chance with less than three minutes remaining, but a Matt Kavanagh try didn't get through. The Iroquois got possession and, after a time out with two minutes left, Lyle Thompson eluded multiple defenders to kill clock, and he drew two penalties, helping Delisle tack on an insurance goal with 49 seconds to go.
Kavanagh and Michael Tagliaferri each scored a team-high four goals for the U.S., and each scored twice in the fourth quarter. Kavanagh also finished with two assists. Delisle, Brendan Bomberry and Randall Staats each had hat tricks for the Iroquois.
The U.S. finishes pool play with a 2-2 record and will now play the winner of Germany-Wales in a quarterfinal game at 4 p.m. Wednesday in Turku. Team USA has never needed to play in the quarterfinal round since sanctioned international U19 play began in 1988. The loss drops its overall record to 38-2, after an 11-9 overtime loss to Canada on Saturday and a 20-1 win against England on Sunday.
The Iroquois (3-1) will be seeded second for the medal rounds and receive a bye to the semifinals, where a potential rematch with the U.S. awaits at 8 p.m. local time Thursday. Canada (4-0) is the top seed and plays a semifinal at 5 p.m. Thursday against an opponent to be determined
The win is the first outdoor, field victory for the Iroquois against the U.S., although they have beaten the U.S. in previous world indoor championships.
Federation of International Lacrosse U19 World Championships
IRQ 2 4 5 4 - 15
USA 5 3 1 4 - 13
Goals: IRQ - B. Bomberry 3, Delisle 3, Staats 3, J. Bomberry 1, Oakes 1, J. Powless 1, Q. Powless 1, Tarbell 1 Thompson 1; USA - Kavanagh 4, Tagliaferri 4, Leonard 2, Eipp 1, Tucker 1, Zoppo 1
Assists: IRQ - Delisle 1; USA - Kavanagh 2, Buczek 1, Keenan 1, Tagliaferri 1
Saves: IRQ - Hill 7; USA - Oliveri 4, Turri 4
Faceoffs: IRQ - 12 of 30; Miller 7 of 15, Q. Powless 5 of 15; USA - 18 of 30; Raffa 8 of 15, Barbarich 8 of 12, Kelly 2 of 3For complete information about the U.S. U19 team, including a roster, please visit http://www.laxmagazine.com/teamusa/u19men/index