U.S. U-20 Women’s National Team open CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship today
The U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team is set to face off against Guatemala in the opening match of the 2012 CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship Friday, followed by games against Cuba and hosts Panama on Sunday and Tuesday respectively.
Friday’s Group B opener begins at 5 p.m. ET, with Cuba at 5 p.m. ET on Sunday, March 4, and Panama at 7:30 p.m. ET on March 6. All matches will be streamed live on CONCACAF.com, and fans can also follow the action as it happens on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker.
U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (2): Bryane Heaberlin (North Carolina; St. Petersburg, Fla.), Abby Smith (Dallas Texans; Dallas, Texas)
DEFENDERS (6): Stephanie Amack (Mustang Blast; Pleasanton, Calif.), Olivia Brannon (Virginia; Troy, Mich.) Crystal Dunn (North Carolina; Rockville Centre, N.Y.), Kassey Kallman (Florida State; Woodbury, Minn.), Mollie Pathman (Duke; Durham, N.C.), Cari Roccaro (Albertson Fury; East Islip, N.Y.)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Brian (Virginia; St. Simons Island, Ga.), Vanessa DiBernardo (Illinois; Naperville, Ill.), Julie Johnston (Santa Clara; Mesa, Ariz.), Sarah Killion (UCLA; Fort Wayne, Ind.), Mandy Laddish (Notre Dame; Lee’s Summit, Mo.), Sam Mewis (UCLA; Hanson, Mass.)
FORWARDS (6): Micaela Capelle (Portland; Gresham, Ore.), Maya Hayes (Penn State; West Orange, N.J.), Lindsey Horan (Colorado Rush; Golden, Colo.), Kealia Ohai (North Carolina; Draper, Utah), Katie Stengel (Wake Forest; Melbourne, Fla.), Chi Ubogagu (Stanford; Coppell, Texas)
- Crystal Dunn, Maya Hayes and Sam Mewis are the three carryovers from the U.S. team that participated in the 2010 CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship.
- Dunn, Hayes and Mewis also played together at the 2008 CONCACAF U-17 Women’s Championship in Trinidad & Tobago, along with Morgan Brian.
- Five players represented the U.S. at the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Germany: Bryane Heaberlin, Dunn, Hayes, Mewis and Mollie Pathman.
- The majority of the U.S. players were born in 1992, with four players born in 1993 (Olivia Brannon, Brian, Heaberlin and Abby Smith) and three born in 1994 (Stephanie Amack, Lindsey Horan and Cari Roccaro).
- Six of the players were on the team that outscored opponents 32-0 in the group phase of the 2012 CONCACAF U-17 Women’s Championship but did not qualify for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup after falling in penalty kicks in the semifinal.
- Four of the players are still in high school, while the other 16 are in college.
- Two players on the roster have been named Gatorade National Girls’ Soccer Player of the Year: Pathman in 2009-10 and Brian in 2010-11.
- Hayes scored 31 goals for Penn State this past season, garnering the Big Ten Forward of the Year award and was named a Hermann Trophy finalist.The U.S.
U-20 Women are looking for their third CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship title. It would be the second straight tournament victory for the U.S., which won the previous edition in 2010 with a 1-0 win against Mexico in Guatemala City, Guatemala.
The 2002 and 2004 tournaments were played as U-19 events until FIFA changed the age level to U-20 to align with the age groups on the men’s side.
In 2002, the event was played with two groups of four and the winner of each group qualified for the FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup without crossing over to determine a tournament winner. Canada won the tournament in 2004 and 2008, defeating the USA in the championship game both times.
EYE ON THE RISING SUN: FIFA has formally confirmed that the 2012 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup will be held in Japan. At the end of December, FIFA announced that the tournament would not be staged in Uzbekistan as previously scheduled because of a number of logistical and technical issues. The Under-20 Women’s World Cup will be played from Aug. 18-Sept. 8. It will be the first time Japan, winners of the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup, will host a FIFA women’s world championship for soccer.
CONTINUING THE JOURNEY: Six members of the current U.S. U-20 WNT were part of the U.S. U-17 WNT that did not qualify for the 2010 FIFA U-17 World Cup. Three members of that squad, Morgan Brian, Bryane Heaberlin and Lindsey Horan, reflect on that tournament and what the experience taught them heading into the 2012 CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship.
BY THE NUMBERS:
2 Times the U.S. has won the CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship (2006, 2010)
3 Players looking to play in their third FIFA youth World Cup: Dunn, Hayes and Mewis
3 CONCACAF berths to the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup
5 U.S. Players who were on the roster for the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup
8 U.S. Players who have been on a U-17 or U-20 roster for a youth FIFA Women’s World Cup
13 Players born in 1992