SECOND-HALF EFFORT FROM U.S. WNT COMES UP SHORT AS AUSTRALIA SECURES 1-0 WIN
Australia ToN Standings After Win as Brazil Plays Japan to 1-1 Draw Earlier in First Match; U.S. Defender Taylor Smith Earns Start in First Cap
SEATTLE, Wash. – In a tightly-contested match, the U.S. Women’s National Team could not create an equalizer despite a furious second-half push and fell 1-0 to Australia in the first match of the Tournament of Nations for both teams.
The U.S. WNT opened the game with a strong effort and almost created the game’s first goal in the 11th minute after some nice footwork from forward Christen Press outside the box found Megan Rapinoe on the left side. Rapinoe’s shot went to the near post but Australia and Houston Dash ‘keeper Lydia Williams did well to push it out for a corner kick.
Australia found its stride in the second frame with some excellent defensive pressure and their efforts paid off in a goal that came from a corner kick. In the 67th minute the USA failed to clear a bouncing ball in the penalty are despite chance to sweep it out of danger and the ball fell to Tameka Butt, who finished from close-range after the penalty area scramble to give Australia the lead.
The USA had three excellent changes to equalize late in the game, but Williams came up huge each time, none bigger than a flying save in the 64 th minute when second half substitute Carli Lloyd ripped a 20-yard shot that was headed into the upper right corner before it was pushed away by the ‘keeper.
In the day’s earlier match, a late equalizer from Camila in the 87 th minute helped Brazil earn a 1-1 tied with Japan after Yuka Momiki had given them a second half lead.
Up Next: The U.S. WNT will travel to San Diego, California, for its second match of the 2017 Tournament of Nations against Brazil on July 30 at 5 p.m. PT on ESPN2.
Goal Scoring Rundown
AUS – Tameka Butt (Elise Kellond-Knight), 67th minute: An Australia corner kick led to a scramble in the box and while several U.S. players tried to clear the ball, it unfortunately bounced to Elise Kellond-Knight’s, who then flicked it to Tameka Butt in front of the goal, allowing her to smash home the game-winning goal from close range. USA 0, AUS 1 FINAL
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Becky Sauerbrunn captained the USA in her 127th cap and eight start of the year. Sauerbrunn is the only player to have played all 720 minutes for the WNT so far in 2017.
North Carolina Courage defender Taylor Smith earned her first cap and first start for the USA. The Tournament of Nations marks Smith’s second call-up after participating in the 2017 January Camp earlier this year, and her first game roster.
Kelley O’Hara earned her 97th cap tonight, inching closer to the century mark.
Abby Dahlkemper earned her fifth cap for the WNT in her second career start. She made her debut for the U.S. on Oct. 19, 2016 against Switzerland in Utah, and her first start against Norway on June 11, playing all 90 minutes.
Alyssa Naeher made her 17th appearance for the USA and 15th start. It was her third consecutive start.
Casey Short made her 11th start in her 11th cap. She has played 90 minutes in in all but one game.
Megan Rapinoe played 90 minutes in her fourth appearance of 2017 and first start since Aug. 9, 2016 against Colombia during the 2016 Olympics.
Samantha Mewis made her 14th career start and earned her 25th cap. Alongside Sauerbrunn, she is the only other player to be in the starting lineup of every game the WNT has played in 2017. She has played 687 minutes in 2017, trailing only Sauerbrunn.
U.S. WNT head coach Jill Ellis used all six allotted substitutions in the game.
– U.S. Women’s National Team Match Report –
Match: Women’s National Team vs. Australia
Date: July 27, 2017
Competition: Tournament of Nations
Venue: CenturyLink Field; Seattle, Wash.
Kickoff: 7:05 p.m. PT
Weather: 68 degrees; Partly sunny
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 0 0 0
AUS 0 1 1
AUS – Tameka Butt (Elise Kellond-Knight) 67th minute
USA : 1-Alyssa Naeher; 16-Taylor Smith (5-Kelley O’Hara, 76), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (capt.), 7-Abby Dahlkemper, 14-Casey Short; 22-Mallory Pugh (19-Crystal Dunn, 58), 20-Allie Long (6-Morgan Brian, 77), 3-Samantha Mewis, 15-Megan Rapinoe; 9-Lindsey Horan (10-Carli Lloyd, 64), 23-Christen Press (13-Alex Morgan, 64)
Subs not used : 2-Sydney Leroux, 8-Julie Ertz, 11-Ali Krieger, 12-Lynn Williams, 17-Margaret Purce, 18-Jane Campbell, 21-Abby Smith
Head coach: Jill Ellis
AUS : 1-Lydia Williams (capt.); 7-Steph Catley, 14-Alanna Kennedy, 21-Ellie Carpenter; 8-Elise Kellond-Knight, 9-Caitlin Foord (15-Emily Gielnik, 81), 10-Emily Van Egmond, 13-Tameka Butt (6-Chole Logarzo, 73) 19-Katrina Gorry; 11-Lisa De Vanna (16-Hayley Raso, 53) 20-Sam Kerr (17-Princess Ibini, 90+2)
Subs not used: 18-Mackenzie Arnold; 2-Gema Simon, 3-Caitlin Cooper, 4-Clare Polkinghorn, 5-Laura Alleway
Head coach: Alen Stajcic
Stats Summary: USA / AUS
Shots: 12 / 11
Shots on Goal: 3 / 4
Saves: 3 / 3
Corner Kicks: 6 / 5
Fouls: 11 / 14
Offside: 4 / 2
AUS – Katrina Gorry (caution) 89th minute
AUS – Lydia Williams (caution) 90+1
Referee: Marie-Soleil Beaudoin (CAN)
Assistant Referee 1: Chantal Boudeau (CAN)
Assistant Referee 2: Marie-Han Gagnon-Chretien (CAN)
4th Official: Maurees Skeete (CAN)
Budweiser Women of the Match: Megan Rapinoe