SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic – The United States rolled past St. Lucia 6-0 to advance to the quarterfinal round of the 2020 Concacaf Women’s Under-20 Championship on Saturday.
Mia Fishel and Brianna Pinto led the Americans with two goals apiece. Sierra Enge added one and there was an own goal as well.
The USA will face Canada on Wednesday, March 4 at 2 p.m. ET. Canada beat Cuba 6-0 in its Round of 16 game to advance after finishing second in Group E, setting up an earlier-than-anticipated match-up with the U.S.
In a quirk of this year’s new qualifying format, this was St. Lucia’s first — and only — match of the tournament after advancing directly to the knockout round via a pre-qualifying competition.
After sweeping through Group C play with a 3-0-0 record and a plus-24 goal difference, U.S. head coach Laura Harvey continued to rotate her Starting XI, but the Americans once again got on the board early. The U.S. took the lead in the eighth minute when Summer Yates found Fishel inside the penalty area as the forward scored her seventh goal of the tournament.
The U.S. continued to find the back of the net down the stretch, and after a St. Lucia own goal, Yates added her second assist of the game when she teed up Sierra Enge for a long-range strike in the 24th minute. Pinto, the reigning U.S. Soccer young female player of the year, fired a 27-yard blasts in the 35th minute to give the U.S. a 4-0 lead at halftime.
Some packed-in defending by St. Lucia, which often had 10 players inside its own defensive third, made things difficult for the U.S. in the second half as the score remained 4-0 until the 70th minute. In the 71st minute, Harvey deployed Sophia Smith, the top pick of the 2020 NWSL College Draft, for her first appearance of the tournament. Moments later, the U.S. added to its lead as Fishel finished a through ball from Samantha Meza in the 76th minute for her eighth goal of the competition.
In the 90th minute, Pinto capped the scoring off a direct free kick from just outside the penalty area for her second of the game. The goal was Pinto’s fifth of the tournament, the second-most on the team behind Fishel.