Photo: Rodrigo Jaramillo, worldsportpics.com
The Vantage Black Sticks Women have been defeated 2-1 by hosts Argentina in the fifth and final test in Buenos Aires.
After a goalless first half, Argentina struck in the 50th minute when Martina Cavallero found space in the New Zealand circle to slip a shot past goalkeeper Grace O’Hanlon.
Five minutes later the hosts doubled their advantage with Magdalena Fernandez converting from open play.
With less than two minutes on the clock, Kelsey Smith gave the Kiwis a glimmer of hope when she went on a run into circle and beat the keeper from a tight angle.
Time was not on New Zealand’s side however with Argentina able to hold on and seal the series with four wins and one loss.
Head coach Mark Hager said it was a disappointing way to end the series with plenty of things to work on.
“Argentina dominated much of the game, especially in the first half and we didn’t do a good job of containing them,” he said.
“Some of our work in the one-on-one contests and defence was poor but Grace had a good game and made some very important saves to keep us in the game.”
The Kiwis now travel home to New Zealand for final preparations ahead of the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games from 5-14 April.
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VANTAGE BLACK STICKS: 1 (Kelsey Smith)
ARGENTINA: 2 (Martina Cavallero, Magdalena Fernandez)