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STORRS, Conn. – As the 2016 Hockey Champions Trophy progresses, former UConn standout Melissa Gonzalez continues to make headlines as a member of the USA Women’s National Field Hockey Team.
Just recently, Gonzalez was chosen as team captain for USA Field Hockey – an honor not only important in the Hockey Champions Trophy, but also for the upcoming Rio 2016 Olympics, which will be her second time participating in the worldwide phenomenon.
Gonzalez aided the U.S. team in its 2-0 victory over Great Britain on Thursday in Stratford City, London, earning the first victory of the tournament for the Americans. It was Gonzalez’s defense that played a big part in the match, helping keep Great Britain scoreless.
“Our ability to keep grinding and trusting the process led us to today’s win,” said Gonzalez after the match. “We’ve been knocking at the door and the results finally fell…we put a collective 60 minutes together; not just on attack, but tidying up on defense as well”
The U.S. National Team tied Australia in the opening match of the Champions Trophy, which was followed by consecutive 4-1 losses to Argentina and Holland. It will play again on Saturday morning at 9 a.m. (ET) against New Zealand.
Gonzalez was a two-time Big East Defensive Player of the Year in Storrs, while also being named the 2010 NFHCA Mideast Region Player of the Year. She was a two-time member of the NFHCA All-America First Team as a junior and senior.
The Huskies reached the NCAA Tournament on three occasions during Gonzalez’s UConn career, between 2007 and 2010.
The 2016 Rio Olympics are taking place from August 5 to August 21, as Gonzalez leads Team USA into Group B – a group that includes Argentina, Australia, Great Britain, India and Japan. The top four teams in each of the two groups advance to the quarterfinals.