Every four years the world's best get together to compete for the World Indoor Lacrosse Championship, and every year the results are the same.
After Iroquois sent the United States packing in the semifinals and Canada thrashed Israel 20-2 to set up the same final as in 2003, 2007 and 2011, there was only one way the game could end. Despite a hard-fought effort from the Iroquois Nation, it was the Canadians' tournament to lose, and they took home their fourth straight gold medal.
In the third-place game the United States completed the medal trifecta for the fourth straight time, comfortably dispatching Israel 15-4. The players might change, but the results don’t seem to change at the World Indoor Lacrosse Championship. Let’s review Sunday’s action and the medal winners from the 2015 tournament.
Gold Medal: Canada
Silver Medal: Iroquois
Bronze Medal: United States
United States 15, Israel 4
It wasn’t exactly where the Americans wanted to be after losing to Iroquois again in the semifinal of the championships. But a bronze medal was on the menu against Israel, and the United States was not going to be denied its fourth consecutive third-place finish.
Marcus Holman started things off early with a goal inside a minute, and the United States rushed out to a 5-1 lead at the end of the first quarter. By halftime the lead was up to 9-2 as the Americans eased off the gas to cruise to the 15-4 win.
Being stars throughout the tournament, Joe Walters had another huge game in terms of assists—with his six against Israel bringing his tournament total to 30—and Kevin Buchanan scored five goals to go with five assists of his own.
Israel came into the game demoralized by a 20-2 loss to Canada and never found an offensive game plan to attack the U.S., scoring its second-lowest total of the tournament with just four goals.
The Americans will be disappointed they couldn't get over the hump and into the final. But a similar result to the previous three iterations of the tournament was the minimum expected, and the United States will be happy not to have let the bronze slip from its grasp.
Canada 12, Iroquois 8
The result might have seemed inevitable from the outside—it was the fourth straight time Canada had taken down Iroquois in the world championship finals—but that didn’t mean the underdog was going to go down without a fight.
Iroquois took a 2-1 lead in the first quarter before allowing the Canadians to strike back, tying proceedings at the end of the first period. Canada took the advantage in the second, but a 6-5 halftime scoreline was a great spot to be in for Iroquois, who was still in position to pull the upset.
Canada jumped out to an 8-5 lead in the third quarter, but Iroquois was right on its tail, cutting the lead to 8-7 in the fourth quarter as a dramatic finished seemed inevitable. But it was not to be, as Canada outscored Iroquois 4-1 from that point on to secure its fourth straight title.
Curtis Dickinson scored four goals, while Daniel Dawson and Shawn Evans finished with two apiece in a game that was much closer than the final score made it seem. But it was the Canadians once again who claimed the sport's top prize.
Stats courtesy of WILC2015.com.