Olympic Hopefuls Make Their Case in USWNT Shutout Win – Just Women’s Sports

    The USWNT cruised through their final game prior to naming their 18-player Olympic roster on Tuesday, defeating Korea Republic 3-0 in a rain-soaked game that saw significant rotation to the starting XI.

    Manager Emma Hayes replaced nine of Saturday’s starters with players vying for a major tournament roster spot, a move that resulted in interesting returns. Alex Morgan was back in the starting lineup, while center-back Sam Staab earned her first international start in her second game with the team.

    Crystal Dunn started the match as a forward then opened the floodgates with her first goal in 75 international matches. Sophia Smith came on as a reserve in the second half alongside Mallory Swanson and Trinity Rodman, promptly doubling the scoreline at a tight angle for a sharp finish. Casey Murphy started in goal, making a number of clutch saves to keep South Korea off of the scoresheet.

    But the biggest moment of the game belonged to Ajax midfielder Lily Yohannes, who scored in her first-ever USWNT cap.

    The teenager was immediately mobbed by her teammates — including most of the US bench — in celebration as nearly 20,000 fans gave her a standing ovation. Just a few days shy of her 17th birthday, Yohannes is the third-youngest to score for the national team and the youngest player to make her debut since USWNT legend Kristine Lilly took the field for the first time in 2001.

    Yohannes is likely on the Olympic roster bubble, but is of great interest to the US as a talented connecting midfielder. But having been born in Virginia before moving to Amsterdam as a child, Yohannes could still possibly decide to play for the Netherlands national team.

    Hayes will be making final roster decisions in the coming weeks, setting the Paris-bound squad up for two send-off friendlies at the end of July. 18 players will make the official Olympic roster, alongside four alternates for training purposes and in case of injury.

    The post Olympic Hopefuls Make Their Case in USWNT Shutout Win appeared first on Just Women's Sports.

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