U.S. Soccer

U.S. Under-18 Women's National Team

U-18 WNT International Matches in England - Feb. 15-26

PLAYER POS. HT. BIRTHDATE HOMETOWN CLUB/COLLEGE
D 5-10 Wichita, Kan. Sporting KC
D 5-6 San Clemente, Calif. SoCal Blues
M 5-6 Littleton, Colo. Colorado Rush
GK 6-2 Edmond, Okla. Oklahoma Football Club
D 5-10 Parker, Colo. Real Colorado
D 5-8 Highlands Ranch, Colo. Real Colorado
F 5-2 Lawrenceville, Ga. Tophat SC
D 5-8 Albuquerque, N.M. New Mexico Rush
GK 5-10 Kearny, N.J. PDA
M 5-3 Huntington Beach, Calif. Slammers FC
D 5-8 The Woodlands, Texas Texas Rush
F 5-5 Cornelius, N.C. NC Fusion
F 5-5 Windsor, Colo. Real Colorado
F 5-5 Brighton, Mich. Michigan Hawks
M 5-7 Temecula, Calif. San Diego Surf
F 5-1 Sterling Heights, Mich. Michigan Hawks
M 5-7 Concord, Mass. FC Stars of Mass.
M 5-4 Macomb Township, Mich. Michigan Hawks
F 5-6 Wilmington, Mass. FC Stars of Massachusetts
F 5-3 Pasco, Wash. Pac NW

U-18 WNT International Matches in England - Feb. 15-26

Position:Defender

Height:5-10

Birthdate:

Position:Defender

Hometown:Wichita, Kan.

Club:Sporting KC

Position:Defender

Height:5-6

Birthdate:

Position:Defender

Hometown:San Clemente, Calif.

Club:SoCal Blues

Position:Midfielder

Height:5-6

Birthdate:

Position:Midfielder

Hometown:Littleton, Colo.

Club:Colorado Rush

Position:Goalkeeper

Height:6-2

Birthdate:

Position:Goalkeeper

Hometown:Edmond, Okla.

Club:Oklahoma Football Club

Position:Defender

Height:5-10

Birthdate:

Position:Defender

Hometown:Parker, Colo.

Club:Real Colorado

Position:Defender

Height:5-8

Birthdate:

Position:Defender

Hometown:Highlands Ranch, Colo.

Club:Real Colorado

Position:Forward

Height:5-2

Birthdate:

Position:Forward

Hometown:Lawrenceville, Ga.

Club:Tophat SC

Position:Defender

Height:5-8

Birthdate:

Position:Defender

Hometown:Albuquerque, N.M.

Club:New Mexico Rush

Position:Goalkeeper

Height:5-10

Birthdate:

Position:Goalkeeper

Hometown:Kearny, N.J.

Club:PDA

Position:Midfielder

Height:5-3

Birthdate:

Position:Midfielder

Hometown:Huntington Beach, Calif.

Club:Slammers FC

Position:Defender

Height:5-8

Birthdate:

Position:Defender

Hometown:The Woodlands, Texas

Club:Texas Rush

Position:Forward

Height:5-5

Birthdate:

Position:Forward

Hometown:Cornelius, N.C.

Club:NC Fusion

Position:Forward

Height:5-5

Birthdate:

Position:Forward

Hometown:Windsor, Colo.

Club:Real Colorado

Position:Forward

Height:5-5

Birthdate:

Position:Forward

Hometown:Brighton, Mich.

Club:Michigan Hawks

Position:Midfielder

Height:5-7

Birthdate:

Position:Midfielder

Hometown:Temecula, Calif.

Club:San Diego Surf

Position:Forward

Height:5-1

Birthdate:

Position:Forward

Hometown:Sterling Heights, Mich.

Club:Michigan Hawks

Position:Midfielder

Height:5-7

Birthdate:

Position:Midfielder

Hometown:Concord, Mass.

Club:FC Stars of Mass.

Position:Midfielder

Height:5-4

Birthdate:

Position:Midfielder

Hometown:Macomb Township, Mich.

Club:Michigan Hawks

Position:Forward

Height:5-6

Birthdate:

Position:Forward

Hometown:Wilmington, Mass.

Club:FC Stars of Massachusetts

Position:Forward

Height:5-3

Birthdate:

Position:Forward

Hometown:Pasco, Wash.

Club:Pac NW

Sophia Soars

Three weeks.
Two countries.
Two age groups.
Six games.
Nine goals.

At the end of February and into early March, while most of her friends back in Colorado were sitting in class stressing to finish their homework, 16-year-old Sophia Smith was getting an education of a different kind.

Well, she was still stressing over her homework, but she was doing it in England and Spain, and instead of reading Shakespeare, she was visiting his home in Stratford-upon-Avon.

She was also playing soccer. Lots of soccer. Between February 15 and March 8, Smith was in Europe, first with the U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team in England, where she scored five goals in three games, a performance that earned her a first call-up to the U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team in La Manga, Spain, where she scored another four goals in three matches.

It is believed to be the most goals scored over six consecutive international matches for any U.S. Youth Women’s National Team player (although Ashley Sanchez did score 12 goals over 11 consecutive international matches for the U.S. U-17 WNT in 2015 and 2016).

“Sophia is first and foremost a very technical player with great athleticism,” said U.S. Women’s National Team Technical Director April Heinrichs, who coached both the U-18s in England the U-20s in Spain. “She can play as a striker and as a flank player, making her incredibly versatile. She plays with her back to the goal and she runs at defenses with speed and deception. She also has a nose for the goal and showed she can finish her chances.”

U-20 WNT

When she left for England, Smith wasn’t planning on extending her trip with a jaunt over to the coast of southeastern Spain, but scoring twice against England and a hat trick against Norway earned her a plane ticket to La Manga, long a March destination for the USA’s Youth Women’s National Teams.

“When April asked me if I’d like to join them in Spain, I didn’t even hesitate,” Smith said. “I’ve been wanting that call for a very long time. I had to call my parents and ask them, but it was an easy yes. I was so excited. Keeping up in school is very hard, but it was definitely worth it.”

In Spain, as the youngest player on the roster and playing against older players, she scored in all three games, finding the net twice against Norway in an 8-2 win, scoring the USA’s lone goal against Germany in a 2-1 loss and scoring the game-winner in a 2-0 victory against France. The goals against Norway and Germany came as a substitute before she got the starting nod against France.

Smith was a member of the USA’s 2017 Under-17 Women’s World Cup Team in Jordan but played only 80 minutes in the tournament, coming off the bench in all three games. She did not score a goal but showed her positive one-on-one qualities and ability to get into dangerous positions while creating some excellent chances in her limited minutes.

In Europe, things just came together for her in front of the goal.

“I guess I just figured out a way to keep my confidence at a good level, but it helps knowing that everyone around me believed in me too,” said Smith. “Obviously, I have some fantastic teammates, and some of the goals came from just being in the right place at the right time. But I love scoring and if I have the opportunity, I’m going to take it.”

Three weeks away from school is a long time for the Stanford-bound high school junior, but surely she will get some extra credit for an excursion the U-18s took to William Shakespeare’s hometown. In ninth grade, Smith was reading Romeo and Juliet. A few weeks ago, she was walking around streets named after the characters.

U-20 WNT

“I emailed my teachers and the principal and I told them I was not going to be home as planned, that I was going to be gone for another 11 days, and that I was willing to do anything I need to stay caught up and up to date,” Smith said. “All my teachers were super supportive and they thought it was awesome. I couldn’t be luckier.”

Smith also appreciates the unique chance to get to play in a U-17 World Cup and then go from the U-18s to the U-20s. Like many of the players on the U.S. Youth National Teams, she aspires to one day represent the senior side, but for now she’s set her goals on trying to earn a consistent spot with the U-20s.

“I know these opportunities don’t come around often for lots of girls,” Smith said. “You get to play against all these different countries and just get a feel for the world out there. Lots of time we play soccer just in our local areas, so getting the opportunity to travel and to experience the cultures outside of the soccer world is awesome too.”

It can be difficult to move from one team and one set of players to an entirely different team, then having to perform in a match right away, but Smith credits her coaches and the players for making the jump easier.

“Getting the opportunity to move up and play with older players is super exciting,” Smith said. “All the girls were super nice and outgoing and really welcoming. No one cares what age you are. There were a few of them that I played with at the U-17 World Cup, but I also made a lot of new friends. The maturity level at this age group and the overall environment is awesome. All the coaches on the sidelines were believing in me and all my teammates, we believe in each other. Not only that, but I was having fun, and that makes it even better.”

U-20 WNT
Karina Rodriguez, Laurel Ivory and Sophia Smith

It’s a long road to the next U-20 Women’s World Cup, and Smith may be two years younger than the 1998 birth year cutoff, but the 2016 U-20 Women’s World Cup Team featured four players who fell into that category (and one even younger in Ashley Sanchez), so the possibility is there.

And Smith is determined to do the work to put herself in position to show the coaches she deserves that chance. As Shakespeare wrote in Hamlet: We know what we are but know not what we may be.

“I am excited every single time I get to play in an international game,” said Smith. “The feeling you get when you score, you just want it again and again. And the more you score, the more confidence you get. I just need to keep the same level of motivation and confidence, and not just in games but also into training at home. It’s super important to not just rely on a team practice or a game to improve but also to get out onto the field when no one is watching and work on the little details that help you get better.” 

Read more
U-18 WNT U-20 WNT Mar 14, 2017

U.S. U-18 WNT Draws 0-0 With Hosts to Finish Trip to England

CHICAGO (Feb. 25, 2017) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team drew 0-0 with the hosts to finish its trip to England with a 2-0-1 record. The USA also defeated England, 3-1, on Feb. 19 and downed Norway 5-0 on Feb. 21. Sophia Smith scored five goals over the two matches and Summer Yates had two. All the matches featured 40-minute halves. This group of players is at the start of a Read more
U-18 WNT Feb 25, 2017

U.S. U-18 WNT Defeats Norway 5-0 As Sophia Smith Nets Hat Trick

CHICAGO (Feb. 21, 2017) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team won its second game in a row in England, defeating its counterparts from Norway, 5-0, as forward Sophia Smith scored three times while forward Summer Yates and midfielder Cori Dyke added single scores. The match was played at St. George’s Park, England’s National Training Center, where the USA defeated Engl Read more
U-18 WNT Feb 22, 2017

U.S. U-18 Downs England, 3-1, As Sophia Smith Scores Twice

CHICAGO (Feb. 19, 2017) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team defeated its counterparts from England, 3-1, as forward Summer Yates scored an early goal followed by a brace from forward Sophia Smith. The match was played at St. George’s Park, England’s National Training Center. The USA will also play Norway on Feb. 21 at St. George’s Park and then finish with ano Read more
U-18 WNT Feb 21, 2017

U.S. U-18 WNT Will Travel to England for Three Matches

CHICAGO (Feb. 10, 2017) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team will travel to England from February 15-26 and will play three matches, two against England and one against Norway. The U.S. team is made up of players born in 2000 and will be playing against its same age group during the three matches. The USA will play England on Feb. 19 and Norway on Feb. 21, both at St. George&rsq Read more
U-18 WNT Feb 10, 2017

U.S. U-18 WNT Will Hold Last Training Camp of 2016 at U.S. Soccer NTC

CHICAGO (Dec. 10, 2016) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team will come together for its final event of the year from Dec. 10-17 at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, Calif. This is the seventh and last U.S. U-18 WNT event of 2016 as this group will move to the U-20 level next year to begin a two-year cycle. Three of this year’s U-18 events were trips to Eu Read more
U-18 WNT Dec 10, 2016

U-18 WNT Defeats Hosts Northern Ireland 3-0 to Finish Second in Women’s International Cup

BELFAST, Northern Ireland (Oct. 24, 2016) – The U.S. U-18 Women’s National Team defeated the Northern Ireland Under-19 WNT by a 3-0 score in its third and final match of the Women’s International Cup. The match was played in front of a crowd of 1,500 fans. The USA finished second in the tournament that also featured France and England. The USA went up 2-0 after 13 minutes, courte Read more
U-18 WNT Oct 24, 2016

U-18 WNT Defeats France 3-1 in Second Match of Women’s International Cup in Northern Ireland

LURGAN, Northern Ireland (Oct. 20, 2016) – The U.S. U-18 Women’s National Team defeated the France Under-19 WNT by a 3-1 score after coming back from conceding an early goal. Kelsey Turnbow scored twice and halftime substitute Belle Briede added a clincher. The USA fell to the England Under-19 WNT 2-1 in its first match on Oct. 18 at the Women’s International Cup and will finish Read more
U-18 WNT Oct 20, 2016

U-18 WNT Falls to England 2-1 In First Match of Women's International Cup in Northern Ireland

BALLYMENA, Northern Ireland (Oct. 18, 2016) – The U.S. U-18 Women’s National Team fell to the England Under-19 WNT by a 2-1 score in the first of three matches at the Women’s International Cup. England took the lead in the 28th minute on a goal from Ajike Babajide, but the USA’s Mireya Grey tied the match five minutes into the second half. England got the game-winner from C Read more
U-18 WNT Oct 18, 2016

U-18 WNT Will Travel to Northern Ireland for 2016 Women's International Cup

CHICAGO (Oct. 12, 2016) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team will travel to Northern Ireland from October 13-24 to participate in the 2016 Women’s International Cup. The Under-19 competition features mostly players born in 1998 and 1999. The USA open the tournament against England on Tuesday, October 18, at the Ballymena Showgrounds in Ballymena at 2 p.m. local time. The US Read more
U-18 WNT Oct 12, 2016

U-18 WNT Heads to Olympic Training Center for Fifth Camp of 2016

CHICAGO (Sept. 1, 2016) – After two international trips and two domestic camps so far this year, the U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team heads to San Diego for a training camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., running from Sept. 3-10. U.S. Soccer Women’s Technical Director April Heinrichs has called up a 26-player roster that features 25 youth club play Read more
U-18 WNT Sep 1, 2016

U-18 WNT Draws England 2-2 to Finish Training in Burton Upon Trent

BURTON UPON TRENT, England (July 15, 2016) – The U.S. U-18 Women’s National Team drew 2-2 with England in the second of two matches against their English counterparts during a training camp being held at St. Georges Park, the sprawling official training center for the England Football Association located about 130 miles north of London. The back-and-forth match saw the USA take the le Read more
U-18 WNT Jul 15, 2016

U-18 WNT Falls to England U-18 WNT 1-0 in Burton Upon Trent

BURTON UPON TRENT, England (July 13, 2016) – The U.S. U-18 Women’s National fell 1-0 to the England U-18 WNT in the first of two matches against their English counterparts during a training camp being held at St. George’s Park, the sprawling official training center for the England Football Association located about 130 miles north of London. The teams will play again on July 14. Read more
U-18 WNT Jul 13, 2016

U-18 WNT Will Travel to England for Training Camp and Two Matches

CHICAGO (July 1, 2016) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team will travel to England from July 6-15 for a training camp being held at St. George’s Park, the sprawling official training center for the England Football Association located about 130 miles north of London. The USA will face the England U-18 WNT twice, on July 12 and July 14, to end the trip. The USA will be coache Read more
U-18 WNT Jul 1, 2016

U-18 WNT Heads To U.S. Soccer NTC For Training Camp

CHICAGO (May 16, 2016) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team will come together for a training camp from May 21-28, at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, California. The USA will be coached by U.S. Soccer Women’s Technical Director April Heinrichs, who has called up 26 players, all youth club players who were born in 1998. All the players in this camp are ag Read more
U-18 WNT May 16, 2016

U.S. U-18 WNT Will Travel to Carson for Training Camp at U.S. Soccer's NTC

CHICAGO (April 11, 2016) – The U.S. Under-18 Women’s National Team will come together for a training camp from April 16-23 at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, Calif. The U.S. U-18 WNT is coming off a successful series of matches in La Manga, Spain in early march. The USA played the U-19 sides of Denmark (0-0), England (1-0) and Norway (1-0) to go undefeated in the co Read more
U-18 WNT Apr 11, 2016
×