Chances fell for both sides in the opening half but neither were able to capitalise on their opportunities.
Haitian goalkeeper, Kerly Theus, made a number of exceptional saves to deny the US team from taking the advantage in the first half. Haiti started the second half on the attack when they applied pressure onto the US defence and created chances of their own. Due to opportunities squandered by both teams, the match looked determined to end as a stalemate.
USA managed to break the deadlock in the 75th minute when Jaelin Howell got past the line of Haiti’s defence, however, with her first effort being stopped by an onrushing Thues, the rebound fell directly on the attacker’s foot where she made no mistake placing the ball into the back of the net. Haiti was then reduced to 10 players after the referee sent off defender, Emeline Charles, after the Haitian received her second yellow card. USA had the opportunity to wrap the game up but, Taryn Torres’ attemp to chip the goalkeeper in the 84th minute, did not work in her favour as the ball dipped just over the crossbar.
Melchie Daelle Dumonay injected some zest into the Haitian attack when she tried the goal from a long distance out but, the US custodian, Amanda McGlynn, managed to get her fingertips on the ball to notch it over the crossbar in the 87th minute. Hope seemed to be lost for Haiti as the final whistle was looming in the air. However, in the added minutes of the game, their captain Nerilla Mondesir finally unlocked the US defence by powering her way through and kneed the ball into the back of the net. Despite McGlynn getting her palm on the ball, the US found themselves level with the Haitians at the final whistle.
The game went straight into a penalty shoot-out to decide the match winner but, the US started by missing their first attempt at the spot. Despite Haiti’s ability to turn the match around, they were unable to hold their nerves in the shoot-out as they missed all their efforts from the penalty mark. USA’s goalkeeper managed to stop two of the three penalties by the Haitians as they progressed into tomorrow’s final. Howell was awarded the Player-of-the-Match title for her goal and midfield performance.
Speaking after the result was USA’s captain, Savannah Demelo, as she stated, “Our team worked hard for the 90 minutes and we knew they were a difficult Haiti team, but we are glad our goalkeeper came up big in the penalty shoot-out and it is great to qualify for the finals.”
Amanda McGlynn (GK), Ashley Sanchez (Samantha Coffey), Isabel Rodriguez, Zoe Morse, Taryn Torres, Savannah Demelo (C)), Karina Rodriguez, Viviana Villacorta, Kiara Pickett, Jaelin Howell, Civana Kuhlmann (Taryn Torres).
Kerly Theus (GK), Ruthny Mathurin, Naphtalie Northe, Emeline Charles, Dougenie Tabita Joseph, Nelourde Nicolas (Betina Petit-Frere), Sherly Jeudy, Nerilia Mondesir (C), Roseline Eloissaint, Rosianna Jean, Melchie Daelle Dumonay.