USA vs Japan
After defeating Russia, Japan seems to be a small obstacle on our road to glory. Indeed, every game is crucial and should not be overlooked. However the victory against Russia has given us a boost of confidence. I know we are going into this game thinking it isn’t going to be the toughest game of our lives. I look forward to seeing how our team rises to the occasion and become a better team. It seems that with each game, we are able to learn more about what we can do and the potential of our talent.
One of my fears is that we will overlook or underestimate Japan’s abilities. It always happens to the best of us. The underdog has shocked the world before and it wouldn’t be the first time. I know we will be able to come together, become a better team, and hopefully stay grounded throughout the game.
Final score: 4-1 USA
The game against Japan was very nerve wrecking. Our team definitely underestimated them and it showed on the field. It was not our best game. Japan’s lone goal was the result of a defensive miscommunication. We thought a Japanese player was offsides, she clearly wasn’t and took advantage of that. She had a breakaway and it was painful to watch. The goal helped put things into perspective for us. We buckled down and scored our last goal at the 91st minute.
Japan fought hard for the ball throughout the entire game. Sometimes I caught myself wondering if they wanted to win more than we did. Every battle for the ball was physical to the maximum. Most of us sustained battle wounds in the most odd places. Despite the height advantage we had on them, Japan continued to fight until the last second of the game.
I have utmost respect for Japan. Their attitudes before, during, and after the game were sportsmanlike. Their coach wore a full black suit and probably was sweating profusely. He managed to maintain his posture the entire game. While we were cooling down and stretching, he walked over and congratulated our win, complimented several players for their notable talent and hopes to see us next summer in Bulgaria for the Deaflympics. I look forward to seeing them again for I have the highest respect for them.