CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The No. 16 U.S. Women’s National Team saw a repeat of their match on Friday against No. 15 Canada at Queens University of Charlotte’s Bessant Field on Sunday evening. A dominating and promising performance from the United Eagles resulted in a 3-0 victory.
When asked if he was pleased with the team’s performance today, USWNT Head Coach David Passmore responded, “I think it’s always difficult when you play a series of games and you rotate the squad. We rotated six players from Friday, but that didn’t seem to affect us.”
“Canada put on some more pressure than they had did in the first test, and I think that made it harder for us to find good opportunities in the first quarter, but I thought our second quarter was excellent. Not just in the fact that we opened up the scoring, but the fact that the way we played we possessed the ball better, we moved it really quickly, and our decision making was better. I think we carried that through to the third quarter. […] But overall really happy, and competition for places is really tough at the moment.”
After getting a feel for each other’s play from the previous game, the first quarter saw evenly matched tempo and possession. Both teams had nice passing sequences but were unable to successfully work their way through each other’s defensive lines to get any good looks on goal. The fast-paced frame ended with a score of 0-0.
The second quarter was a whole new story for the red, white and blue, who dominated possession and controlled the speed of play. Stepping up the offensive pressure, USA won their first penalty corner, plus a few more. Finally, their efforts paid off when captain Ashley Hoffman (Mohnton, Pa.) scored on a drag flick on a penalty corner 21 minutes in. Up 1-0, the United Eagles kept up their pace for the remainder of the frame, outpacing Canada in all statistical categories. A big breakaway run from Linnea Gonzales (Bel Air, Md.) looked promising, but Canada goalkeeper Marcia Laplante came up big with the save. The score was 1-0, USA, going into halftime.
Another successful quarter ensued for USA in third frame. However, it was Canada who earned the first penalty corner of the quarter, testing out the USA defensive unit, which held strong as Meredith Sholder (Fleetwood, Pa.) and Hoffman worked to clear the ball out wide. USA doubled their lead to 2-0 in the 36th minute when Brooke Deberdine (Millersville, Pa.) sent in a cross from the left side of the circle, finding the stick of Amanda Golini (Randolph, N.J.) who deflected the ball high into the cage. Canada tried to cut the deficit, hurrying into their attacking circle with 4 minutes to go in the quarter, but Maddie Zimmer (Hershey, Pa.) carried the ball all the way out from the circle and into the USA attacking 25. The United Eagles kept up their offensive pressure and went into the final quarter up 2-0.
Both teams had attacking chances in the fourth, but it was USA who was able to capitalize one final time. In the 57th minute, Natalie Konerth (Huntingtown, Md.) sealed the deal for the United Eagles when she sent the ball straight into the cage off a penalty corner. The final minutes wound down with the same high energy and speed from USA and Canada alike, and eventually the United States came away with a 3-0 shutout.
It was overall a very successful weekend for the USWNT – notching two wins against Canada that included scoring six goals and not allowing a single one against.
Next up for the United Eagles will be more trainings and preparation for the Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile in October. The final roster for this event is expected to be released in the coming weeks.
For more information regarding the USWNT vs. Canada series, visit the event page.