USA avoids Couva curse, edging Haiti on penalties to qualify for Under-20 Women's World Cup

Stung by a stoppage-time equalizer in the Concacaf semifinals, the USA regained its focus and converted three straight penalty kicks to beat Haiti, 3-0, and qualify for the 2018 Under-20 Women’s World Cup in France.

Zoe Morse, the fourth USA kicker, coolly tucked away her low shot in to end a dramatic, back-and-forth match in Couva, Trinidad.

The USA broke a 0-0 tie in the 75th minute with a Jaelin Howell goal and had to regroup quickly after Nerilia Mondesir snuck behind the American back line to equalize in the second added minute.

The teams went straight to penalties and USA didn’t start well; Sophie Smith went first and Haitian keeper Kerly Theus got a hand to the shot. But Mondesir missed with Haiti’s first attempt and the USA took command when keeper Amanda McGlynn came up with saves following successful kicks by substitute Taryn Torres and Howell. Haiti’s faint hopes flickered out when Morse sent Theus the wrong way and rolled her shot inside the post.

Haiti and the USA shared 25 shots nearly equally (13 for Haiti, 12 for the USA) and the Americans surrendered the equalizer playing 11-against-10. Emeline Charles departed with her second caution in the 83rd minute but Haiti’s spirit and skill conjured up a tying goal when Melchie Daelle Dumonay lobbed a ball that Mondesir first-timed off McGlynn’s glove and into the net.

Sixteen nations will gather in France this August for the U-20 Women’s World Cup, for which the Americans have qualified all nine times it has been held. The tournament started out in 2002 as a U-19 competition won by the Americans. The USA also prevailed in 2008 and 2012. North Korea is the defending champion.

Haiti can still qualify for the U-20 Women’s World Cup when it plays the other semifinal loser, Canada, in the third-place game Sunday.

Jan. 26 in Couva
USA 1 Haiti 1 (USA wins 3-0 on penalties). Goals: Jaelin Howell 75; Mondesir 90+2.
USA -- McGlynn; McKeown, Davidson, Morse, Howell; Pickett, Villacorta (Pinto, 52), DeMelo, Kuhlmann (Torres, 73), Sanchez (Coffey, 88), Smith.
Haiti -- Theus; Jean, Northe, Charles, Mathurin; Dumonay, Joseph; Nicolas (Petit-Frere, 68), Jeudy, Eloissaint; Mondesir.
Red Card: Haiti -- Charles 83.
Referee: Melissa Borjas (Honduras).
Att.: 140.

Shots: 12 / 13
Shots on Goal: 4 / 4
Saves: 3 / 3
Corner Kicks: 6 / 4
Fouls: 11 / 16
Offside: 8 / 0
2 comments about "USA avoids Couva curse, edging Haiti on penalties to qualify for Under-20 Women's World Cup".
  1. Bob Ashpole, January 27, 2018 at 5:26 p.m.

    It looked to me as though the US team was tired. Repeatedly shots on an open goal missed because of poor technique. Tired legs lead to bad technique.

  2. James Madison, January 28, 2018 at 6 p.m.

    Once again, where are the player ratings?  Why, oh why, are they a regular matter for the men, but not the women?

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