CHICAGO (Dec. 23, 2013) – U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team head coach Michelle French has named the 20-player roster for the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship, to be held from Jan. 9-19 in George Town, Cayman Islands.
The roster consists of 18 collegiate players, one professional and one player still in high school. The lone professional player is forward Lindsey Horan of French club Paris Saint-Germain, while midfielder Andi Sullivan from Bethesda SC is the youngest player on the roster, having just turned 18. Players born on or after January 1, 1994, are eligible for the 2014 U-20 Women’s World Cup.
“At every position, we feel these players are technically proficient and possess a great understanding of how we want to play in order to be successful as a team,” said French. "We have players with very unique qualities ranging from creative and effective finishers, to players who are threatening with their dynamic movement in the midfield, to players who are defensively strong and physical in one-on-one situations. Our overall athleticism will be another strength of this team.”
The 2014 CONCACAF Women's U-20 Championship features eight nations divided into two groups of four teams. The top two finishers in each group will qualify for the semifinals, with the winners of those games along with the winner of the third-place match earning berths to the 2014 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Canada.
The USA opens Group A play on Thurs., Jan. 9, against Costa Rica, faces Jamaica on Sat., Jan. 11, and finishes the group against Guatemala on Mon., Jan. 13. The winner of Group A will meet the Group B runner-up, and vice versa, in the semifinal matches on Fri., Jan. 17, and the Championship and Third-Place Matches will take place on Jan. 19. All three of the USA's group games kick off at 7:30 p.m. ET and the tournament will be played entirely at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex.
“The process of narrowing the roster down to twenty players was extremely difficult,” said French, who saw 45 players in game action this year with the U-20s and many more during college matches this fall. “With such a short amount of time following the college season and before qualifying, it was crucial to find the right mix of players that complement each other's personalities on and off the field.”
- Host Cayman Islands, Honduras, Trinidad & Tobago and Mexico are in Group B.
- French, a member of the USA’s silver medal winning team at the 2000 Olympics in Australia, became head coach of this age group last February and will be coaching in her first qualifying tournament.
- Eight players on the roster have played two years of college soccer, while 10 recently completed their freshman season.
- Two players are from the 2013 NCAA Champion UCLA Bruins in goalkeeper Katelyn Rowland and midfielder Lauren Kaskie.
- Four players are represented from Stanford University in Amack, goalkeeper Jane Campbell, former U-17 co-captain Maddie Bauer and outside back Laura Liedle.
- Notre Dame has three players – Roccaro, former U-17 captain Morgan Andrews and defender Katie Naughton.
- Penn State has two in defender Brittany Basinger and forward Mallory Webber. Naughton is the oldest player on the roster as she will turn 20 in February.
- North Carolina, Virginia, Boston College, Florida, UConn, Harvard and Wisconsin have one player each on the roster.
- While six players have yet to earn their first caps at the U-20 level, the roster is fairly experienced internationally with 10 players having represented the USA in a FIFA Women’s World Cup at the U-17 or U-20 level.
- Three players on the roster – defenders Stephanie Amack, midfielder Cari Roccaro and striker Horan – were a part of the USA’s last qualifying team that won the 2012 CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Championship in Panama. Horan, the team’s leading scorer during the last cycle, missed the 2012 FIFA Women’s World Cup with a knee injury, but Amack and Roccaro were a part of the squad that won the tournament, defeating Germany 1-0 in the championship game played in Tokyo, Japan.
- Roccaro, the current team captain who played center-back at the last U-20 World Cup, leads the way with 22 career U-20 caps, while Horan has scored 13 goals at the U-20 level in 17 matches.
- The 5-foot-9 Horan is the only player on the roster to have earned caps with the full WNT, playing off the bench against China at the Algarve Cup in Portugal last March and against Brazil on Nov. 10 where she picked up her first assist at the senior level.
- Horan has seven goals in 10 appearances so far this season for PSG and scored 17 goals in 20 games last year in the Feminine Division 1.
- Eight players on the roster were key members of the U.S. team that played at the 2012 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Azerbaijan where the Americans tied eventual champions France and runners-up Korea DPR in group play but became the first women’s team in FIFA history to earn five points and fail to advance to the knockout stage.
- Forward Savannah Jordan scored 23 goals as a freshman for the Florida Gators while Makenzy Doniak knocked in 20 as a sophomore in helping lead UVA to an undefeated regular season and a berth in the Women’s College Cup Final Four.
- Sophomore McKenzie Meehan also scored 20 times for Boston College.
- Harvard freshman Margaret Purce led the Ivy League in shots and tied for the lead in goals with 11.
UNITED STATES UNDER-20 WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM ROSTER
2014 CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship
George Town, Cayman Islands
GOALKEEPERS (2): Jane Campbell (Stanford; Kennesaw, Ga.), Katelyn Rowland (UCLA; Vacaville, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Morgan Andrews (Notre Dame; Milford, N.H.), Rachel Hill (UConn; Rollinsford, N.H.), Rose Lavelle (Wisconsin; Cincinnati, Ohio), Cari Roccaro (Notre Dame; East Islip, N.Y.), Andi Sullivan (Bethesda SC; Lorton, Va.), Mallory Weber (Penn State; Novi, Mich.)
FORWARDS (6): Makenzy Doniak (Virginia; Chino Hills, Calif.), Summer Green (North Carolina; Milford, Mich.), Lindsey Horan (Pairs Saint-Germain; Golden, Colo.), Savannah Jordan (Florida; Fayetteville, Ga.), McKenzie Meehan (Boston College; Scituate, R.I.), Margaret Purce (Harvard; Silver Spring, Md.)
Head Coach: Michelle French Seattle, Wash.
Technical Director: April Heinrichs Clifton, Va.
Assistant Coach: Erica Walsh State College, Pa.
Goalkeeper Coach: Philip Wheddon Syracuse, N.Y.
Fitness Coach: Ryan Alexander Jonesborough, Tenn.