USA Women’s U-20 team broke the hearts of the Jamaican squad, when they crushed their hopes of having a chance to qualify for the next round of the CONCACAF Women’s Championship, by scoring the winner of their 2-1 encounter in the last minute of the match. The second fixture of the double header at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva saw USA’s forward, Sophia Smith, inspiring her team to victory by contributing with a goal and delivering the key pass to unlock the Jamaica’s defence in the 90th.
Smith called the Jamaican custodian, Sydney Schneider, to duty in the 14th minute where the goalkeeper made a tremendous save to keep the Americans out. Smith then had another opportunity four minutes later but was blocked by Jamaican defender, Jaydn Matthews, as she got in the way of the shot to deflect it for a corner. Civana Kuhlmann had an attempt at the target, for the US in the 23rd, but her shot was always raising over the crossbar. Smith then smashed a spectacular free-kick into the back of the net, from the edge of the 18-yard box in the 42nd minute, to give the Americans the advantage at the half.
Chances came on both sides of the field in the second half but the excitement was left until the final two minutes of the match. Jamaica managed to score an equaliser in the 88th minute after Jadyn Matthews finished off a free-kick whipped in from the left flank by Olufolasde Adamolekun. USA did not let Jamaica enjoy the moment for long when they responded from the kick-off to secure all three points from the match and eliminate their Caribbean rivals. Jaelin Howell finished off a well worked play by the US team, as they moved the ball forward with brisk passing after the resumption, where Smith found the substitute in the penalty area and the striker made no mistake. Smith was awarded the Player-of-the-Match title for her goal and assist in the game.
Amanda McGlynn (GK), Sophia Smith, Naomi Girma, Isabel Rodriguez, Brianna Pinto, Zoe Morse, Savannah Demelo (C) (Jaelin Howell), Tara McKeown, Viviana Villacorta, Civana Kuhlmann (Abigail Kim), Kelsy Turnbow (Ashley Sanchez).
Sydney Schneider (GK)(C), Madiya Harriott, Chyanne Dennis, Gabrielle Gayle, Marlee Fray (Jazmin Grant), Ebony Clarke (Olufolasde Adamolekun), Jody Brown, Mireya Grey (Shayla Smart), Gisell Washington, Alyssa Julien, Jadyn Matthews.