US Women See Off Scotland In Second Game
- Updated: February 14, 2013
The US Women’s National Team defeated Scotland for the second time in four days as they picked up a 3-1 victory Wednesday night in Nashville, TN. Tom Sermanni continues to evaluate players ahead of the Algarve Cup which begins on March 6th. With a different starting XI from Saturday night, Sydnex Leroux and Whitney Engen got their first starts for the National Team. Abby Wambach also earned her 200th CAP with this second game against Scotland. Things would not be as easy for the US Women as it was on Saturday with Scotland putting the early pressure on in the game and seemed to dominate possession until Megan Rapinoe unleashed a shot in the 21st minute. The goal seemed to settle the US slightly, but Scotland continued to force the issue going into halftime.
Tom Sermanni elected not to make any changes at the half and it provided Abby Wambach the chance to score her 156th career international goal in the 51st minute. Wambach is now five goals away from tying Mia Hamm’s all time record of 156 international goals. Just 10 minutes later though, Wambach’s night was finished when she made way for Christen Press. Press, who was coming off a two goal night Saturday in her first CAP, made an immediate impact for the US, scoring in the 64st minute to make it 3-0 to the US. With the goal tonight, Christen Press became the first Women’s National Team player to score three goals in her first two games. The third US change of the evening came in the 68th minute when Carli Lloyd entered the game for Shannon Boxx.
The US had plenty of opportunities to add to their lead, but were just unable to find the back of the net. In the 69th minute, Crystal Dunn made her National Team debut, replacing Ali Krieger on defense. The US looked to be wearing Scotland down, but could not find a way to beat the Scottish keeper Shannon Lynn for a fourth goal. In the 80th minute, the US made their fourth change with Tobin Heath entering the game for Sydney Leroux. Leroux had some pretty nice looks at the Scotland net, but was unable to get a shot on frame that would beat the keeper. Moment’s after that, Scotland made the game a little more interesting when a precise pass from Emma Mitchell to Suzanne Grant beat Hope Solo to the far post to pull Scotland within two.
The final US substitution came in the 85th minute when Lori Lindsey came on for Kelley O’Hara. The US was still looking for the fourth goal to match the score from Saturday’s game, but was unable to break down the Scotland back line and keeper Shannon Lynn. Lynn replaced starter Gemma Fay in the Scotland net to begin the second half.
The US will have just under two weeks before the leave for Portugal to begin play in the Algarve Cup. A lot of young faces have been given a chance by Sermanni to make a good impression before Portugal. Youngsters like Christen Press and Whitney Engen have showed that they are capable of competing for a top spot, while veterans like Ali Krieger are reminding the world that the US intends to stay ranked at number one going into Women’s World Cup Qualifiers next year. A perfect 2-0 start to the new year under head coach Tom Sermanni, and the US will be looking to build on that when they take on Iceland on March 6th to open play at the Algarve Cup.