Thailand earned their first FIL World Championship victory Monday with a 12-3 victory over Colombia. TLA faced Colombia in their first bracket game following the pool play to start out the tournament.
After a close first quarter, Thailand outscored Colombia 9-1 in the remaining three quarters. Colton McCaffrey led the scoring for Thailand with two goals and four assists. Liew Pornkulwat recorded two goals and two assists, while Kohei Naoi and Cameron Chinvarakorn added two goals each and Reed Barbe, Art Thamasangvarn, Kacy Arteam and Kiddee Charoenpanitkul each notched a goal.
Liew began the scoring with an unassisted goal six minutes in. Art increased the Thailand lead to 2-0 with another unassisted goal, before Colombia cut the lead to one with a goal from Jiovany Rendon. Thailand and Colombia each scored one more goal before the end of quarter with goals from Cameron, assisted by Colton, and Timothy Drumtra, respectively.
Thailand pulled away in the second quarter with four unanswered goals. Cam began the frame with an unassisted goal with 16:30 remaining in the half, which Kohei followed up less than a minute later with a goal assisted by Liew. Kacy scored his only goal of the game with just over 12 minutes left in the half. Reed closed out the scoring for the period with a goal off of an assist from Colton, bringing Thailand’s lead to 7-2 at the half.
Colombia scored their third and final goal of the game 2:15 into the second half with a goal from David Valencia, assisted by Timothy Drumtra. Thailand responded with goals from Colton, Kiddee and Liew in the period. Colton took part in all three of the goals scored by Thailand in the third quarter, with assists on both Kiddee’s and Liew’s goals. Thailand led 10-3 after three quarters of play.
Thailand closed out the game with two goals in the fourth quarter. Colton notched his second goal of the game just over two minutes into the final frame. Kohei scored the final Thailand goal off of an assist by Liew with 8:06 to go in the game, increasing Thailand’s lead to the final score of 12-3. The 12 goals are the most scored by Thailand any of their FIL World Championship games.
Ben Brown started in goal for Thailand and recorded nine saves and allowed two goals. James Suriyodorn came in at halftime for TLA, marking three saves in the second half, with Ben making one save in the second half in a Colombia man-up situation. Colombia’s goalie Sebastian Veleze recorded six saves in 80 minutes, with two saves in each of the final three quarters.
Colombia won the battle at the faceoff, with Cam Scully-Ramirez winning 10 of the 17 draws he took. Kohei won five of 12 faceoffs, Kacy was 2-5 on the day and Tham Tironsakkul won the single faceoff he took for Thailand.
Neither team converted on the combined ten man-up opportunities. Thailand out-shot Colombia 37-31, picked up 31 ground balls to Colombia’s 25 and recorded one fewer turnover.
“Win or lose the pride we feel for representing Thailand in the games has never wavered, however, securing a victory in our first ever World Games appearance is definitely sweet,” Head Coach Dylan Sheridan said. “Hopefully the team is hungry for more, but the message will stay the same. Keep it simple, keep doing things the right way, and good things happen.”
“This win is certainly a special one,” Payu Nerngchamnong, President of TLA, said. “Although we have won many times over the last five years, resulting in winning the Singha trophy twice in the last two years. However, winning at the World Championship is something else. It’s the accumulation of all the hard work that the team and the coaching staffs put in over the years. I am happy as well as proud for our players, Coach Sheridan, the coaching staffs and our country. It is one for the record book, and for all our memories.”