The 2012 CONCACAF Women’s Under-20 Championship kicked off in Panama, yesterday, with everything going to plan except for the late start of the first match. Group A played yesterday, with favorites Canada and Mexico both winning their matches versus Haiti and Jamaica, respectively.
CANADA 5 – Haiti 0. Canada was always in control, but did not find the back of the net until the second-half. Charron-Delage’s two-goal performance as a second half sub may have won her a starting spot, in place of Rutger’s Amelia Pietrangelo, who had a few nice runs down the right wing, but was unable to really get into the match. Purdue’s Nkem Ezurike cleaned up twice in the box for her brace. Goal Scorers: Ezurike (CAN; 47′, 53′), Charron-Delage (CAN; 51′, 62′), and either Zadorsky or Richardson (CAN; 59′)*.
*On the fourth goal, there is a discrepancy for the credit. The box score has Zadorsky, but the write-ups list Richardson, who may or may not have touched Zadorsky’s half-pass/half-shot. (I am leaning toward a non-touch, credit to Zadorsky.)
MEXICO 3 – Jamaica 1. Mexico took an early 1-0 lead off a low strike from distance by future USC Trojan Tanya Samarzich, but Auburn’s Kimberly Spence equalized in the 15th minute for Jamaica. For the next twenty-plus minutes, Mexico continued to press and attack, with Jamaica trying to exploit Mexico’s weak defending. The deadlock was broken in the 39th minute by Memphis’ Natalia Gomez-Junco whose powerful one-touch, side-footed volley is the goal of the tournament, so far. Five minutes later Christabel Martinez headed in Mexico’s third goal just before halftime. In the second-half, Mexico had a few chances, but both squads lost energy, with Jamaica unable to mount any kind of serious attack. Goal Scorers: Samarzich (MEX; 6′), Spence (JAM; 15′), Gomez-Junco (MEX; 39′), C. Martinez (MEX; 44′).
* * *
For Group A, its next match day is Saturday, March 3rd: (5pm) Mexico v. Haiti. (7pm) Canada v. Jamaica. Canada and Mexico can each clinch a knock-out round spot with a victory. Haiti and Jamaica must win their matches to have any practical chance at making it out of the group.