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USWNT Apr 10, 2024

USWNT bests Canada in PKs to capture 5th straight SheBelieves Cup title

COLOMBUS, Ohio – The U.S. Women’s National Team won its fifth consecutive and seventh overall SheBelieves Cup title in thrilling fashion, defeating Canada 5-4 in a penalty kick shootout following a 2-2 draw through regulation in the Championship Game of the 2024 SheBelieves Cup.

Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher scored a penalty kick and saved three – a feat only accomplished twice in USWNT history, both times by her in the span of five weeks – and defender Emily Fox converted the decisive penalty in the sixth round of spot kicks to lift the USA to victory. Braces from forward Sophia Smith, who was named the SheBelieves Cup MVP, and Canada’s Adriana Leon forced the penalty shootout after a deadlock in regulation time.

The tempo was high from the jump as the USA dominated possession and kept most of the first 10 minutes in Canada’s half. Connecting passes and creating opportunities all over the field, the Americans came very close to opening the scoring in the 29th minute on a brilliant effort from 19-year-old Jaedyn Shaw – who has been on a hot streak and was involved in both goals tonight in addition to scoring in the semifinal in Japan – after Alex Morgan nodded a pass toward Shaw inside the box. She skillfully popped the ball over a defender and stretched out to poke a shot on goal, but Canada ‘keeper Kailen Sheridan did well to come out and smother the attempt.

Against the run of play, Canada was the team that found the opener, which came after a long ball down the right flank that forced Naeher to rush to the top of the penalty box. The 50/50 ball ricocheted off Naeher and Canada’s Ashley Lawrence and landed at the feet of defender Deanne Rose, who played it to Leon inside the box for her finish into an open net. Morgan nearly equalized just two minutes later after trying to capitalize on a poor clearance following a set piece, but Kadeisha Buchanan did well to block the shot out for a corner and send the U.S. into the halftime break with a 1-0 deficit.

The USA came out strong in the second half and it only took five minutes before Smith equalized with a brilliant left-footed strike from just outside the top of the box off a deft pass from Shaw. Smith came close to scoring again in the 62nd minute on a breakaway following a great through ball from Mallory Swanson, but the ball barely got away from under her feet and was cleared away by a retreating Canda defender. Her efforts then paid off in the 68th minute after Shaw picked out forward Trinity Rodman on the run up the middle. Rodman did well to drag two defenders in to pressure her, leaving Smith open for a pass into the right side of the penalty area and she executed a classy finish through Sheridan’s legs to take the lead.

Canada caught a break in the waning minutes of regulation after Leon was judged to have been brought down inside the USA’s box on what was a soft call at best. She stepped up to the penalty spot and converted with a powerful strike in the 84th minute to level the score and send the match to a penalty kick shootout at the final whistle.

After meeting in a penalty kick shootout on March 6 in the semifinals of the 2024 Concacaf W Gold, the familiar foes once again found themselves in penalty kicks, this time with a trophy on the line. The back-and-forth duel was a thrilling affair as it went into sudden death, but Naeher’s heroics, which included two consecutive saves on the third and fourth attempts from Canada, stole she show and sent the raucous crowd of 19,049 fans into elation. Defender Emily Fox – taking her first ever penalty kick in a shootout as a professional — dealt the final blow as she converted the kick that won the match and saw the USA lift the trophy once again.

The USA did go behind in the shootout as Trinity Rodman saw USA’s first attempt saved. It took the USA until Round 3 to get back level after Smith and Naeher scored, and then Naeher saved Jade Rose’s shot. After Naeher then saved substitute Chloe Lasse’s shot, team captain Lindsey Horan scored the USA fourth attempt. Julie Grosso then converted, which meant that Emily Sonnett’s shot could have won it for the USA on its fifth kick, but she blasted her shot over the top. Lawrence then converted, and defender Abby Dahlkemper also scored on a clutch sixth attempt for the USA, but Naeher stopped the shot of late sub Evelyne Viens, setting the stage for Fox’s heroics, and she rolled her game-winning shot into the net as Sheridan went the wrong way.


CAN – Adriana Leon (Deanne Rose), 40th minute: Canada played out of the back with a long ball down the right flank, which Ashley Lawrence brought down near the 18-yard-box as Naeher rushed out. The two collided and the ball landed at Rose’s feet, who played it to Leon inside the box for her to finish into an open net from 12 yards out. USA 0, CAN 1

USA – Sophia Smith (Jaedyn Shaw), 50th minute: After a bit of chaos near the mouth of goal, Coffey got the ball outside the box and played Shaw out toward the right, where she played a one-touch pass to Smith, who dribbled inside to get away from her mark and fired a left-footed shot from 19 yards out to beat the goalkeeper inside the left post. USA 1, CAN 1

USA – Sophia Smith (Trinity Rodman), 68th minute: Shaw played Rodman into the Canada defense half from midfield. She pulled two defenders in to pressure her, which allowed her to lay off a pass to her right for Smith on the run to finish with a low shot from about eight yards out. USA 2, CAN 1 

CAN – Adriana Leon (Penalty Kick), 86th minute: Canada earned a penalty kick after Leon was adjudged to have been brought down inside the USA box. She stepped up to the penalty spot and buried a powerful strike to the right. USA 2, CAN 2

Additional Notes:

  • Sophia Smith’s goals marked her 17th and 18th career goals and her second and third of the year. All three of her goals in 2024 have come against Canada.
  • This was Smith’s sixth career multi-goal game and it came two years to the day that she scored a hat trick at Field, tallying three times in the USA’s victory over Uzbekistan on April 9, 2022.
  • Jaedyn Shaw’s assist to set up Smith’s goal marked her first career assist. She leads the USA with six goal involvements this year (5 goals, 1 assist).
  • The penalty shootout marked the second time in 35 days that the USWNT went to penalty kicks against Canada.
  • Alyssa Naeher is the only goalkeeper in USWNT history to save three penalties in a shootout, a feat which she has now accomplished twice.
  • The U.S. has won each of its last seven matches in SheBelieves Cup play and is unbeaten in its last 20 matches in the competition, with its last SheBelieves Cup defeat coming to France in 2017.


Match: United States Women’s National Team vs. Canada Women’s National Team
Date: April 9, 2024
Competition: 2024 SheBelieves Cup
Venue: Field; Columbus, Ohio
Attendance: 19,049
Kickoff: 7:07 p.m. ET
Weather: 61 degrees, cloudy

Scoring Summary:     1          2        F       PK
USA                              0     2       2       5
CAN                             1      1       2       4

CAN – Adriana Leon (Deanne Rose)               40th minute
USA – Sophia Smith (Jaedyn Shaw)                50
USA – Sophia Smith (Trinity Rodman)             64
CAN – Adriana Leon (Penalty Kick)                 86

Penalty Summary: 

USA: Rodman (Saved), Smith (Scored), Naeher (Scored), Horan (Scored), Sonnett (Missed), Dahlkemper (Scored), Fox (Scored)

CAN: Flemming (Scored), Leon (Scored), Rose (Saved), Lacasse (Saved), Grosso (Scored), Lawrence (Scored), Viens (Saved)


USA: 1-Alyssa Naeher; 23-Emily Fox, 12-Tierna Davidson, 2-Abby Dahlkemper, 19-Crystal Dunn (20-Casey Krueger, 87); 17-Sam Coffey (9-Mallory Swanson, 46), 14-Emily Sonnett, 10-Lindsey Horan (Capt.); 11-Sophia Smith, 13-Alex Morgan (22-Trinity Rodman, 64), 8-Jaedyn Shaw (15-Korbin Albert)

Substitutions Not Used: 18-Casey Murphy, 21-Jane Campbell, 3-Jenna Nighswonger, 4-Naomi Girma, 5-Olivia Moultrie, 6-Eva Gaetino, 7-Catarina Macario, 16-Lily Johannes

Head coach: Twila Kilgore

CAN: 1-Kailen Sheridan; 12-Jade Rose, 14-Vanessa Gilles, 3-Kadeisha Buchanan; 10-Ashley Lawrence, 13-Simi Awujo (7-Julia Grosso, 73), 17-Jessie Fleming (Capt.), 16-Janine Beckie (15-Evelyne Viens, 73); 6-Deanne Rose (21-Gabby Carle,53), 19-Adriana Leon, 9-Jordyn Huitema (20-Cloe Lacasse, 45+4)

Substitutions Not Used: 18-Sabrina D’Angelo, 22-Anna Karpenko, 2-Clarissa Larisey, 4-Shelina Zadorsky, 5-Emma Regan, 8-Marie-Yasmine Alidou, 11-Desiree Scott, 23-Bianca St. Georges

Head coach: Bev Priestman

Stats Summary: USA / CAN
Shots: 12/ 9
Shots on Goal: 5 / 4
Saves: 3 / 2
Corner Kicks: 6 / 3
Fouls: 4 / 13
Offside: 2 / 3

Misconduct Summary:
CAN – Jessie Fleming (Caution)             23rd minute

Referee: Crystal Sobers (TRI)
Assistant Referee 1: Melissa Nicholas (TRI)
Assistant Referee 2: Evelynn Carissa Douglas Jacob (TRI)
4th Official: Alex Billeter (USA)

Woman of the Match: Alyssa Naeher
SheBelieves Cup MVP: Sophia Smith