BERKELEY – California field hockey players Monica Marrazzo and Michaela Swensen were selected to play in USA Field Hockey national championships this week, and both Golden Bears will come home with medals after their respective teams took gold and silver at the Spooky Nook Sports Complex in Lancaster, Penn.
Marrazzo won the gold medal at the USA Field Hockey Women’s National Championship with the USA Eagles while Swensen won silver at the USA Field Hockey Women’s U21 National Championship with the USA Red team.
Marrazzo’s USA Eagles went 2-1 in the group stage with identical 3-0 victories over the Patriots and Courage bookending a 2-0 loss to the Freedom in the group stage. The Eagles then defeated the U21 team 1-0 to advance to the championship final and won the championship with a 2-1 shutout victory over the Freedom after the teams drew 1-1 in regulation.
In the U21 Championship, Swensen’s USA Red team opened with a 2-1 loss to USA Blue before defeating the U21 team 7-1 and USA White 2-0 to advance to the final. Swensen’s team fell to USA Blue in the final Wednesday.
The Senior National Championship invites 133 players to compete in an eight-team tournament with U.S. head coach Craig Parnham and his staff using the tournament from June 16-21 as the selection process for the United States Women’s National Squad that will compete internationally in 2014-15. The U21 National Championship features 72 athletes from across the country playing in the tournament from June 22-25 for spots on the 2014-15 Junior National Team.
Players at the Senior National Championships are either currently enrolled in or recently graduated from college. They are selected from U.S.A. Field Hockey’s High Performance Training Centers across the country, which help to identify, train, and provide premiere skill competitions for potential National Team athletes.