The U.S. Under-17 Women’s National Team won Group A of the 2008 CONCACAF Under-17 Women’s Championship with a 9-1 win against Trinidad & Tobago in their final group match Tuesday night at Marvin Lee Stadium.
In the semifinals, the U.S. will face Mexico who finished in second place in Group B. The semifinal matchup will take place at 7:30 p.m. ET on Thursday, July 24, at Marvin Lee Stadium in Trinidad. In the other semifinal clash, at 5 p.m. ET on Thursday, Canada will face Costa Rica. The two semifinal winners will automatically qualify for the 2008 FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup, to be held from Oct. 28-Nov. 16 in New Zealand. The third place team from CONCACAF will also qualify.
Costa Rica advanced to the semifinals with an 8-1 victory against El Salvador in their final match. The margin of victory, combined with the U.S. margin of victory against Trinidad & Tobago, boosted the Ticas to second place in Group A.
“We’re very pleased to go into the next stage,” said U.S. U-17 WNT head coach Kazbek Tambi. “We’ve taken the first group one game at a time and tonight was important for us because a tie or a victory was going to put us through in first place in our group. That’s what we wanted. I’m very proud of the players. They had an awesome game and we’re through to the next stage.”
The U.S. U-17 Women opened the scoring even earlier than in previous matches, with Verloo and Kristen Mewis combining to find the net in the second minute. Verloo gained possession of the ball deep on the right side and sent in a cross that Kristen Mewis slammed into the upper right corner of the net with a one-time shot.
It was Verloo’s turn to score nine minutes later. The U.S. earned a corner kick on the right side that Tymrak sent into the middle of the 18-yard box. Defender Amber Brooks was there to get a head on the ball, but her shot pinged off the crossbar. Verloo, who had followed through on the play, was there to meet it, hitting the ball into the goal from three yards out.
Trinidad & Tobago surprised the U.S. one minute later with a goal of their own. The U.S. was called for a foul and Soca Princesses earned a free kick from about 40 yards out on the right side of the field. Trinidadian defender Karyn Forbes launched the ball into the middle of the area, where it slipped through U.S. goalkeeper Kelsey Wys’s hands and onto the ground behind her. Captain Mariah Shade had followed through on the play and was there to tap the ball into the open net.
DiMartino created a scoring opportunity in the 18th minute when she carried the ball up the left side of the Trinidadian area, trying to shrug off Rhea Belgrave. DiMartino and Belgrave stumbled and fell, but both jumped right back up and as DiMartino was going for the ball, Belgrave grabbed on to her shirt and pulled her back down. Mexican referee Queztalli Alvarado did not hesitate in pointing to the penalty spot. Kristen Mewis, who was named captain for the match, capitalized on the penalty kick and increased the score to 3-1.
It became 4-1 just two minutes later, as Alexis Harris collected the ball in the middle of the field and slotted it out to the right for Tymrak. Tymrak collected the ball and moved in towards the center, sending a sharp, precise pass straight ahead, where DiMartino was cutting through the Trinidadian defense. DiMartino ran onto the ball and faced goalkeeper Saundra Baron, sending a low, driven shot into the back of the net.
Tymrak assisted Johnson’s goal four minutes later. She received the ball on the right flank from Verloo, who beat midfielder Jessica De Leon one-on-one. Tymrak carried the ball to the endline and slipped a cross back to Johnson, who is wide open at the top of the six-yard box. Johnson doesn’t even let the ball touch the ground, blasting in the volley for the team’s fifth goal.
In the 43rd minute, Tymrak outran her defender on the right flank, earning a corner kick. She sent the ball back to Harris, who was just outside the 18-yard box. Harris looked up and sent a high ball over the out-stretched hands of Baron and into the upper left corner of the net.
Tymrak had her fourth and final assist of the night in stoppage time of the first half. Samantha Mewis collected the ball in the center of the field and played it into space on the right flank. Tymrak outran her defender and sent in a cross from the touchline to an onrushing Verloo who slipped the ball into the goal for her second tally of the evening.
Verloo capped off her hat trick in the 51st minute when DiMartino shook off a defender and sent a cross in from the left side. Verloo was there to meet it, getting a head on the ball and sending it past Baron.
The U.S. team’s ninth and final goal came from No. 9, Samantha Mewis. The U.S. earned a corner kick on the right side that Morgan Brian sent into the middle of the area. The defense tried to clear it with a header, but it was poorly done and the ball bounced to Samantha Mewis, who sent a one-time, left-footed volley across the goal and into the upper left corner of the net.
CONCACAF is the last region to qualify for the 2008 FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup in New Zealand, after Ghana and Nigeria clinched African qualifying earlier this month. The winner of the CONCACAF qualifying tournament will join Group C as the seeded team along with Japan, France and Paraguay. One other CONCACAF team will play in Group A with host New Zealand, Colombia and Denmark. The other CONCACAF qualifier will play in Group B with Germany, North Korea and either Ghana or Nigeria. A draw will be held to determine who will be Team A from CONCACAF and who will be Team B.
-- U.S. UNDER-17 WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM GAME REPORT --
Match-up: USA vs. Trinidad & Tobago
Competition: 2008 CONCACAF Under-17 Women’s Championship
Venue: Marvin Lee Stadium; Macoya, Trinidad
Date: July 22, 2008; Kickoff – 7:00 p.m. ET
Weather: 90 degrees, Partly Cloudy
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 7 2 9
TRI 1 0 1
USA – Kristen Mewis (Courtney Verloo) 2nd minute.
USA – Courtney Verloo (unassisted) 11.
TRI – Mariah Shade (Karyn Forbes) 12.
USA – Kristen Mewis (penalty) 18.
USA – Victoria DiMartino (Erika Tymrak) 20.
USA – Samantha Johnson (Erika Tymrak) 24.
USA – Alexis Harris (Erika Tymrak) 43.
USA – Courtney Verloo (Erika Tymrak) 46+.
USA – Courtney Verloo (Victoria DiMartino) 51.
USA – Samantha Mewis (unassisted) 76.
USA: 24-Kelsey Wys; 2-Crystal Dunn, 4-Alexis Harris, 3-Cloee Colohan, 20-Amber Brooks; 13-Kristen Mewis (14-Olivia Klei, 46), 9-Samantha Mewis, 8-Erika Tymrak (12-Morgan Brian, 46), 6-Samantha Johnson; 15-Victoria DiMartino, 21-Courtney Verloo (7-Kathryn Bennett, 74)
Subs not used: 1-Alexa Gaul, 5-Sydney Payne, 10-Tani Costa, 23-Rachel Nuzzolese
Head Coach: Kazbek Tambi
TRI: 1-Saundra Baron; 2-Taylor Mims, 4-Rhea Belgrave, 5-Arin King; 11-Sidonia Hoareau (9-Stephanie Williams, 74), 12-Camille Pereira (3-Latifa Kelly, 74), 14-Karyn Forbes, 16-Shahamin Nunes (13-Natasha Prentice, 46), 19-Shakira Salandy; 7-Jessica De Leon, 10-Mariah Shade
Subs not used: 21-Daystar Swift, 6-Tiana Bateau, 18-Rebecca Cuthbert, 8-Afiyah Matthias, 17-Casey McKenzie, 15-Natasha St. Louis
Head Coach: Randy Waldrum
Statistical Summary: USA / TRI
Shots: 26 / 2
Shots on Goal: 19 / 1
Saves: 0 / 10
Corner Kicks: 11 / 1
Fouls: 14 / 7
Offside: 6 / 1
Referee: Quetzalli Alvarado (MEX)
Asst. Referee: Mayte Chavez (MEX)
Asst. Referee: Antonette Williams (JAM)
4th Official: Sabina Charles (STL)
Sierra Mist Woman of the Match: Erika Tymrak
Group A Results / Schedule
Costa Rica 0 v USA 6
T&T 5 v El Salvador 1
USA 9 v El Salvador 0
T&T 0 v Costa Rica 0
El Salvador 1, Costa Rica 8
T&T 1 v USA 9
Group A Standings
USA 3 3 0 0 24 1 +23 9
CRC 3 1 1 1 8 7 +1 4
TRI 3 1 1 1 6 10 -4 4
SLV 3 0 3 0 2 22 -20 0
Semifinals* – Marvin Lee Stadium
July 24, Canada vs. Costa Rica, 5 p.m.
July 24, USA vs. Mexico, 7:30 p.m.
Finals – Marvin Lee Stadium
July 27, Third Place Match, 4 p.m.
July 27, Championship, 6 p.m.
Post-Match Quote Sheet: U.S. U-17 WNT 9, Trinidad & Tobago 1
U.S. U-17 WNT Head Coach Kazbek Tambi
On the U.S. team’s performance:
“We’re very pleased to go into the next stage. We’ve taken the first group one game at a time and tonight was important for us because a tie or a victory was going to put us through in first place in our group. That’s what we wanted. I’m very proud of the players. They had an awesome game and we’re through to the next stage.
“I had no idea going into this tournament how convincing we would be in these initial stages but, it seems that every day, that as we’ve gotten used to playing on the field, the environment, the country and the tournament, we’ve gotten better with each day. Again, I had no idea going in, but the next stage is still a whole new ball game and it starts 0-0 again with Mexico so we can’t look too far now. Our next mission will be to try to prepare and have a strong match against Mexico.”
On the play of Trinidad & Tobago:
“I thought that they played well at times tonight. I know that perhaps that one of the differences between us and them is that we were together for several months before coming in here. We’ve been lucky enough, in my instance, to have several training camps, a couple of international trips, with this group so we’ve maybe had a little bit of a headstart over some of the teams here, including T & T. But I think T & T has great potential, solid players and I think they should be nothing but proud of their tournament. They came very close and basically lost out on goal difference as far as going forward so I think this was not a bad tournament for T & T and they have a lot to look forward to in the future.”
On the U.S. Women's key to being a women’s soccer powerhouse:
“Well, in the United States we have a little bit of an advantage because girls’ football has been around for many years. It has been very organized. I have gotten the resources to put my National Team together, six, seven training camps before we got here. It’s a combination of all those factors that have helped us get to a strong level. There’s no reason why T & T can’t become a great soccer program in the next couple of years to come. I think if the resources are put into the girls’ side, there’s tremendous athleticism and creativity in the Caribbean. You see that on the men’s side. If the men can play great, there’s no reason why the women won’t be able to get there in the near future, also.”
U.S. U-17 WNT Midfielder Samantha Johnson
On the team’s mentality going into the next round:
“The team feels very good. We just try to go out every game and take it game by game, practice by practice and work very hard. We feel good about the wins but we aren’t try to get in over our heads. We still have to get past Mexico. If we do that we’ll be happy.”
On her experience in Trinidad:
“It’s been very different but we like it a lot. We’re having a lot of fun. We go out when we’re not practicing. We do a lot of things together.”
U.S. U-17 WNT Midfielder Erika Tymrak
On the match:
“Trinidad put up a great fight but we came out on the field calm and confident and we just played our game and I think it showed out there tonight. (Our game is) just passing the ball, possessing and then, when we get a chance, we attack and we finish, like we did tonight.”
On her four assists during the match:
“I try and penetrate up the flank as much as I can, and when I get the chance I’ll slip (my teammates) the ball or I’ll cross them. They’re really good at finishing and they did a great job today.”
On facing Mexico in the next round:
“Mexico is a great competitor but I think that as long as we keep up what we’re doing and keep on training well, we’re going to walk out with a win.”
Full ussoccer Blog.
US coach sees good potential in T&T Girls.
By: Shaun Fuentes (TTFF).
US Women's Under 17 head coach Kazbek Tambi had some encouraging words for Trinidad and Tobago after his side enjoyed a 9-1 win in Tuesday's Concacaf Women's Under 17 Championship match at the Marvin Lee Stadium.
Speaking in the post game conference: "I think at times they played well. It was a bit different for them because they were not together as long as we are. I think T&T has great potential with some solid players. They should be nothing but proud of their tournament.
"They came very close and basically lost out on goal difference in terms of going forward. Girls football has been around for many years and is very organised in the US. There are a lot of factors that have helped us get to where we are. There is no reason why T&T cannot have a great soccer program in years to come. They have tremendous athleticism." Tambi added that it would be disappointing if the USA did not go on to win the CONCACAF series.
Meantime T&T head coach Randy Waldrum emphasized the need for a continuation to the current women's program, particularly as the country looks ahead to possible hosting of the 2010 FIFA U-17 Women's Championship. Eight members of the current team can play at the U-15 level and will therefore be eligible for the 2010 Finals.
"I think we've seen a lot of promise with this group but it was just too difficult tonight for us against the Americans. We played the best team in the world. Of course it's disappointing not to advance but we have seen a lot of promise and only a continuation of the program will serve us better now."