NAMIBIA’S men bowed out of the Indoor Hockey World Cup in Pretoria when they lost 3-2 to the United States in a thrilling quarter final match on Friday evening.
n a pulsating match, the United States took a 3-1 lead by the third quarter, but Namibia attacked relentlessly and a late goal by Liam Hermanus set up a tense finish. Namibia, however, ran out of time as the USA held on to progress to the semifinals.
The USA took an early lead when Aki Kaeppeler scored from a counterattack after only two minutes, but Namibia immediately struck back when Percy Barthram equalised from a short corner.
The action continued unabated in the second quarter, with Namibian keeper DJ Strauss saving from Kaeppeler, while Nico Neethling deflected narrowly wide from a Liam Hermanus cross.
Chances opened up at both ends with Kai Kokkolakis having a shot saved, while Hermanus hit the post with a backstick shot.
Namibia continued to attack, winning a short corner just before half time, but they failed to capitalise and the USA made them pay when Marius Leser scored from a counterattack early in third quarter.
Barthram and Hermanus came close to scoring for Namibia, but the USA went 3-1 ahead when Pat Harris scored from a short corner, and after relentless Namibian attacks, Hermanus finally scored from a short corner.
It was too little, too late though, as the USA held on for a 3-2 victory.