Curtis Dickson and Geoff Snider helped Canada claim Gold at the 2014 World Lacrosse Championships
DENVER, CO -- Five goals from Kevin Crowley and a ball-control game plan that kept the dangerous United States team with the ball out of its stick for extended periods of the game led Canada to its third Federation of International Lacrosse world championship gold medal.
Canada beat Team USA 8-5 in front of 11,861 fans at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in the 2014 FIL World Championship, presented by Trusted Choice, final.
Canada dominated the ground game - scooping 35 ground balls compared to 22 for the United States, allowing the team to run extensive time off the clock after running out to a 3-1 lead at the half and 7-2 after three quarters. Team USA, which had not lost in the tournament and defeated Canada 10-7 on the opening night July 10, scored three late goals as it tried to mount a comeback, but it was too little, too late.
Canada, which also won titles in 1978 and 2006, made it three straight tournaments where the loser of the pool play game between the two powerhouses of the international game lost in the finals. The U.S. had won the 2010 world championship in Manchester, England.
Team USA's early game was marred by poor shooting, as they took nine in the first quarter but only forced Canada goalie and tournament MVP Dillon Ward to make three saves. He didn't have to make any in the second quarter, as Team USA only managed two shots but did score on one. He finished with ten saves on the day and was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player.
Kevin Leveille scored three for Team USA, bookending its day with its first two goals, then the final as time wound down. Rob Pannell, named Outstanding Attackman, had a goal and three assists.
Jordan Hall had a pair of assists for Canada and Cam Holding had another goal and assist as they kept the United States from winning its record 10th world championship.
Earlier in the day before the final, the Iroquois Nationals faced off with Australia in the Bronze Medal game. Behind four points each from Miles (3G, 1A) and Lyle (2G, 2A) Thompson and an 11-save afternoon from goalie Warren Hill, the Nationals ran away with a 16-5 win over Australia, securing its first-ever medal at a senior world championship and breaking the Sharks' streak of a podium finish at every event dating back to 1967.
Recaps courtesy of Sean Burns from LaxMagazine.com
National Lacrosse League pros comprised half of the All-World team as five NLL players were named to the squad for outstanding play over the course of the tournament.
Dillon Ward was named the Most Valuable Player of the championship, becoming the first goalie to ever receive the honor. Ward had a 63.3 save percentage to rank second in the tournament and a 4.45 goals against average that ranked fourth.
The other players named as the best players at their positions were all from the United States - Rob Pannell on attack, Paul Rabil at midfield and Tucker Durkin on defense.
Pannell was the leading scorer for the U.S. with 32 points (17g, 15a) and his 2.14 assists per game ranked second in the tournament. Rabil had 15 goals and eight assists from his midfield position and his 23 points ranked second for the U.S. Durkin anchored a U.S. defense that allowed just 34 goals in seven games, the lowest figure of any team in the tournament.
The complete All-World team:
Curtis Dickson, Canada
Rob Pannell, United States
Lyle Thompson, Iroquois Nationals
David Lawson, United States
Paul Rabil, United States
Jeremy Thompson, Iroquois Nationals
Tucker Durkin, United States
Brodie Merrill, Canada
Kyle Rubisch, Canada
Dillon Ward, Canada
Outstanding Attackman: Rob Pannell, United States
Outstanding Midfielder: Paul Rabil, United States
Outstanding Defenseman: Tucker Durkin, United States
Outstanding Goalie: Dillon Ward, Canada
Most Valuable Player: Dillon Ward, Canada
NLL players on Team Canada
Kyle Rubisch (Edmonton Rush)
Jesse Gamble (Toronto Rock)
Brodie Merrill (Philadelphia Wings)
Cam Flint (Minnesota Swarm)
Cameron Holding (Colorado Mammoth)
Kevin Crowley (Philadelphia Wings)
Adam Jones (Colorado Mammoth)
Jordan MacIntosh (Minnesota Swarm)
Geoff Snider (Calgary Roughnecks)
Dillon Ward (Colorado Mammoth)
Mark Matthews (Edmonton Rush)
Jordan Hall (Philadelphia Wings)
Jason Noble (Minnesota Swarm)
Matt Vinc (Rochester Knighthawks)
Curtis Dickson (Calgary Roughnecks)
Zack Greer (Edmonton Rush)
NLL players on Iroquois Nationals
Cody Jamieson (Rochester Knighthawks)
Sid Smith (Rochester Knighthawks)
Brett Bucktooth (Vancouver Stealth)
Jeremy Thompson (Edmonton Rush)
Jeff Shattler (Calgary Roughnecks)
Craig Point (Rochester Knighthawks)
NLL players on Team USA
Garrett Thul (Philadelphia Wings)