With 100 days until Rio, the U.S. women’s field hockey team knows its slate of games in pool play. And now, they know the order in which they have to play them.
The Americans will begin the day after the Opening Ceremony, opening women’s pool play against its greatest rival, Argentina.
Much as was the case four years ago, the States need to have a good start in the 12-team Olympic tournament, given the fact that they are in the Group of Death along with India, Team GB, Australia, and Japan. The other group in the women’s championship include overwhelming favorite Holland, along with Spain, Germany, China, Korea, and New Zealand.
There is, however, a greater margin for error in pool play during these Olympics because, for the first time in Olympic history, a quarterfinal round is going to be played, like in all other FIH world tournaments the last few years. In other words, the Americans aren’t aiming to be in the top two of the group in order to make the knockout stage, but only have to avoid being in the bottom two.
Still, the fact that the United States has beaten Argentina in the last two Pan American Games, as well as in the 2012 London games, the Americans are looking for full points out of the opener against their PAHF rival.