LANGLEY, British Columbia — The United States scored three goals in the opening minute and a half of the game and comfortably cruised to a 17-3 victory over the Czech Republic in the quarterfinal round of the World Indoor Lacrosse Championship on Wednesday night.
The U.S. will meet the Iroquois Nationals in the semifinal round on Thursday night (8 p.m. Eastern) on Lax Sports Network. Four-time champion Canada will play England in the other semifinal.
The U.S. handed the Czech Republic its first loss of the tournament on Wednesday behind another strong effort from Connor Kelly. Playing in his second game for the U.S. indoor team after helping the Whipsnakes win the Premier Lacrosse League championship on Saturday, Kelly had four goals and four assists for the second straight game.
Kieran McArdle, the U.S. team’s leading scorer in the tournament with 36 points (11g, 25a), added a goal and a team-high five assists on Wednesday night. Blaze Riorden had a hat trick and Gale Thorpe, David Emala and Connor Buczek each added two goals.
David Mather got the start in goal and made 19 saves to earn the win while shutting out the Czech Republic in the second half. Trevor Baptiste was dominant on draws, winning 21 of 24.
The U.S., a bronze medalist in each of the four previous World Indoor Lacrosse Championships, will get another shot at the Iroquois, a team it has never beaten at the event, on Thursday night. In the pool play matchup, the U.S. had an early 4-1 lead and made a late rally before falling 12-10. The U.S. had two possessions in the final 70 seconds with a chance to tie the game.