SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic – The U.S. Under-20 women’s national team earned a berth to the 2020 Under-20 Women’s World Cup with a dominant 6-0 victory over the Dominican Republic in the semifinals of the Concacaf Women’s U-20 Championship on Friday.
With a lightning start that saw two goals from midfielder Brianna Pinto in the opening four minutes, the USA was well on its way to a World Cup ticket before five minutes were gone. Pinto added one more to complete her hat-trick while goals from forwards Mia Fishel and Trinity Rodman also helped the U.S. qualify for its 10th consecutive World Cup at the U-19/U-20 level.
This year’s World Cup will be co-hosted by Panama and Costa Rica.
The U.S. will contest the 2020 Concacaf Women’s U-20 Championship Final against the winner of Friday’s second semifinal between Mexico and Haiti. Kickoff for the Final at Estadio Olimpico Felix Sanchez is set for 1 p.m. ET on Sunday. The game will be broadcast live on Concacaf Go, Concacaf Facebook, Concacaf YouTube and TUDN Xtra.
Fishel’s goal was her 11th of the tournament, the most for a U.S. player in a Concacaf qualifying tournament at this level. Kelly Wilson scored nine in three games in qualifying for the 2002 U-19 Women’s World Cup. Kerri Hanks had nine in the qualifying for the 2004 U-19 Women’s World Cup.
Michelle Akers holds the record for most goals for a senior U.S. women’s national team player in a Concacaf qualifying tournament when she scored 11 in qualifying for the 1991 Women’s World Cup. With one more goal, Fishel will set an all-time record for the USWNT in a qualifying tournament, albeit in more games than her predecessors due to the change in format for this year’s competition.
The semifinal presented a rematch against upstart Dominican Republic after the home team upset Jamaica 2-1 in the quarterfinals to earn its spot in the final four. DR’s advancement to the semifinal in front of its home fans represents its highest inish in a Concacaf tournament.
U.S. head coach Laura Harvey made seven changes to the starting XI that defeated DR 4-0 in its second match of the tournament. The addition of Rodman proved impactful as the forward played a part in the first three goals over a span of 14 minutes, tallying two assists and a goal.
The U.S. threatened from the opening whistle, hitting the woodwork only moments after kickoff before Pinto tallied just 84 seconds into the match as Rodman found her alone inside the six-yard box. The USA doubled its lead with Rodman finding Pinto again. This time it was a far post cross from the right wing as Pinto crushed a volley home from 10 yards.
Rodman added a goal of her own and Pinto completed her hat trick as the U.S. jumped out to a 4-0 advantage in the 21st minute. With three goals in the first half, Pinto increased her tally at the tournament to nine, tied for second-most ever scored by a U.S. player during a Concacaf qualifying tournament at this level.
The second half saw more of the same from the USA, which scored its fifth goal of the game through Fishel in the 56th minute. In the 62nd minute, Rodman bagged her brace and capped the scoring on a nice turn at the top of the box before crushing a shot into the upper left corner.
The USA allowed three total shots, two on goal, while outshooting its foes, 22-3. Claudia Dickey picked up the shutout in goal, her fourth of the tournament as the U.S. is yet to concede in the competition. Dickey tied Katelyn Rowland for the most shutouts by a U.S. player in a single Concacaf Women’s U-20 Championship.