Argentina stun champs Germany

Argentina stun champs Germany

Argentina stun champs Germany

Argentina humiliated double defending Olympic champions Germany 5-2 to reach the men's hockey final for the first time on Tuesday.

The South Americans pounced on a German team who only squeezed into the semifinals by scoring three times in the closing five minutes to beat New Zealand in the last-eight, 3-2. Defender Gonzalo Peillat hit a hat-trick of penalty corners with Joaquin Menini and Lucas Vila giving Argentina a 5-0 lead.

Menini's 35th minute goal was the pick of the bunch for an Argentina team who will win their first medal in men's hockey. Agustin Mazzilli escaped a defender to lift the ball over German goalkeeper Nicolas Jacobi for his team-mate to tap home.

Peillat's triple took his total for the tournament to 10. "We watched a lot of videos of the Germans before this game. We had three corners in the first part of the game and then we scored three-from-three so it was good, happy," said 24-year-old Peillat.

Moritz Furste and Christopher Ruhr scored late consolation strikes for Germany. Argentina were also indebted to goalkeeper Juan Vivaldi who pulled off 10 saves in total.

"We didn't play our best hockey today, that's for sure," admitted Furste. Argentina, ranked at seven in the world, have already surpassed their best previous Olympic performance of a fifth-place finish at the 1948 Games in London. Four years ago, in London again, they were 10th. In the final they will face the Netherlands, who were Olympic champions in 1996 and 2000 and silver medallists in 2012, or Belgium.

Dutch eves sparkle
Defending champions Netherlands will face Germany, while Britain take on New Zealand in the women's hockey semifinals  on Wednesday. World number one Netherlands, who are seeking a third successive gold, beat Argentina 3-2 in the quarterfinals, while Germany dumped out the United States with a 2-1 victory on Monday.

New Zealand hammered world number three Australia 4-2 in their quarterfinal to set up a chance of a rare hockey medal, as Britain, who won the bronze medal in the 2012 London Games, ousted Spain 3-1.

Netherlands were quick off the blocks against world number two Argentina as they romped to a two-goal lead thanks to goals from Laurien Leurink and Lidewij Welten in the first half.

Kelly Jonker opened up a three-goal gap after she scored from a penalty corner just six minutes into the third quarter but Argentina's Florencia Habif pulled one back ahead of the final quarter.

Delfina Merino scored eight minutes from the final whistle to set up a nervy ending but Netherlands nullified Argentina's attacking threat to book their place in the final-four.

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