Victory Over Chile Gives U-21 USWNT Second 2024 JPAC Win

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SURREY, BC, Canada – On the Fourth of July in Surrey, Canada, the No. 7 U.S. U-21 Women’s National Team faced No. 16 Chile at the 2024 Junior Pan American Championships (JPAC). In an energetic match, the Junior Eagles scored three times in the second half to claim a 4-2 victory.

"We are very happy to have earned a win against a very good Chile team," said U.S. U-21 Women's National Team Head Coach Allan Law. "Scoring four goals and performing very well for large periods of the game is pleasing. We were able to make a few adjustments and improve on our Uruguay performance."

After a tense shootout victory for USA in last year’s JPAC match-up, both teams were eager to face each other. It was a competitive match the whole way, with USA displaying the poise they needed to pull ahead after a 1-1 tie at halftime.

The USA defense and midfield showed good vision early on, including a few intercepts by Dani Mendez-Trendler (Reistertown, Md.) and long balls up the field from Josie Hollamon (Delmar, Del.). 4 minutes in, Mia Abello (Houston, Texas) dribbled into the circle and earned USA a penalty stroke. The chance, taken by Hope Rose (Dauphin, Pa.), was saved by Chile’s goalkeeper. USA’s first penalty corner chance came at the 7-minute mark, with a foul forced by Lucy Adams (Andover, Mass.). The red, white, and blue took an early lead here, as Rose tipped in the shot by Jans Croon (Manhattan Beach, Calif.). A minute later, USA’s Natalie McKenna (Northport, N.Y.) made her first save in goal of the day. It was shortly after that, 8 minutes into play, that Chile won a penalty corner that gave them the equalizer. After a charged first quarter, the score sat a 1-1.

Getting on the attack early in the second, USA’s Ave Moore (Southampton, N.J.) sent a shot wide in the first minute. Not soon after, the Junior Eagles had another good look when Ryleigh Heck (Ocean City, N.J.) intercepted from the high press, then took a shot that deflected out off a Chile defender’s stick. Dribbling down the righthand side, Adams earned another penalty corner for USA, where she gathered the rebound and sent a reverse chip over the cage. With 5 minutes remaining in the half, Mendez-Trendler made a big intercept, dribbled up the field, and won a penalty corner for USA. The shot was tipped wide by the Chile goalkeeper, and the frame ended with the score still 1-1.

Again, it was a quick start to the quarter for USA. Olivia Bent-Cole (Philadelphia, Pa.) won a penalty corner 30 seconds in, which was saved by the Chile defense, but USA earned another almost immediately. It was a near repeat of their first goal, this time the sweep at the top from Croon hit off a defender’s stick into the cage. Playing a bit of defense for the next few minutes, the Junior Eagles calmly fended off the Chile attack. Down a player after a green card in the 36th minute, USA conceded a penalty corner, but defended it well. On a subsequent set piece chance for Chile, McKenna laid down for the save.

Back on the attack in the next minute, USA earned a penalty corner. It was a beautiful set of play, as a string of passes ended with Mendez-Trendler finishing it in the cage. The goal gave USA a 3-1 lead heading into the final quarter.

Looking confident, USA continued to play strong defense in the fourth, getting some good looks up on attack as well. Chile earned an attacking penalty corner in the 50th minute, which turned out in USA’s favor, as the mistrap at the top was taken up by Maci Bradford (Delmar, Del.) and then sent into the net by Ella Gaitan (Belvidere, N.J.). With 10 minutes left to play, USA had a 4-1 lead. Chile’s next penalty corner was blocked by McKenna and cleared out by Hollamon. Chile put on more pressure, scoring their first goal since the first quarter, to narrow USA’s lead to 4-2. A Chile set piece chance with less than a minute left was fruitless, as USA finished with a 4-2 win.

After an off day, the Junior Eagles will return to play No. 39 Mexico on Saturday, July 6 at 1:00 p.m. ET.

For more information regarding the 2024 Junior Pan American Championships, visit the event page.


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