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USWNT Advance To Gold Cup Semi-Final

The U.S. Women’s National Team kicked off the knockout stage of the 2024 Concacaf W Gold Cup with a convincing 3-0 quarterfinal win against Colombia. Captain Lindsey Horan opened the scoring with an early penalty kick, defender Jenna Nighswonger netted her second international goal and teenage forward Jaedyn Shaw bagged her team-leading third tally of the Concacaf W Gold Cup.

Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher earned her 100th cap, becoming the third U.S. goalkeeper to reach the milestone as she made a number of impressive saves to earn her 61st career shutout.

Lindsay Horan of uswnt against colombia
Lindsay Horan in action - Photo by Kiyoshi Mio - USA TODAY Sports

USWNT 3 Colombia 0

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U.S. interim head coach Twila Kilgore made six changes to the starting lineup that faced Mexico in the group stage finale. Naeher, defender Emily Fox, midfielders Sam Coffey and Horan plus forward Trinity Rodman started both matches.

First Half

The quarterfinal was intense from the opening whistle, as Colombia came out with an edge, playing a bruising, physical style. The U.S. battled through a flurry of first-half fouls and the Americans’ high press helped to generate the game’s first goal. After winning the ball in Colombian territory, Horan played forward Alex Morgan into the area, where the veteran striker was taken down in the box by Jorelyn Carabali. Despite Colombia’s attempts to frazzle her before the kick, Horan stepped up to the spot for the penalty and coolly buried it.


The press continued to pay dividends throughout the first half, as young forwards Shaw and Rodman menaced Colombia on the wings. The U.S. nearly doubled its lead in the 16th, as Shaw pounced on a poor pass while Colombia attempted to build out of the back, but goalkeeper Natalia Giraldo got just enough on it to get the ball out of bounds. In the 18th, Shaw ripped a rocket of a shot to the top right corner that went just wide.


Colombia’s continued physicality saw tensions rise between the two teams, but as momentum could have started to shift following a 20th-minute yellow card shown to Rodman, Nighswonger netted her second international goal to take control of the game for the USA. Defender Naomi Girma got things started with a beautiful long ball to Morgan in the box, who headed it along to Nighswonger to double the American advantage.


On her milestone evening, Naeher made two of her most spectacular saves of the tournament thus far as Colombia grew into the game and started to threaten more around the half-hour mark. In the 32nd, standout forward Linda Caicedo launched a shot from outside the arc, but Naeher dove to her left and made the save. In the 38th, the veteran netminder made an even more impressive stop, leaping and getting her left hand on a well-hit one-timed shot from Ilana Izquierdo. On the night, Naeher made three saves after making just two in her first two games of the W Gold Cup combined.


The U.S. put the game out of reach in first-half stoppage time with a lovely goal in transition finished by Shaw. Defender Emily Fox, who did well to contain the dynamic Caicedo on the attack, picked out Rodman on the wing and the 21-year-old Rodman put a perfectly-placed cross in for the 19-year-old Shaw, who one-timed it home to put the U.S. up 3-0. Shaw became the youngest player to score for the USWNT in the knockout rounds of an official competition and joined U.S. legend Shannon Boxx as the only player to tally in her first three starts. In the ninth minute of stoppage time, Horan nearly added to the U.S. lead with a dangerous free kick just outside the box that rattled off the post.

Alex Morgan of uswnt
Alex Morgan confronts Colombia forward Maria Usme during the first half. Photo by Kiyoshi Mio - USA TODAY Sports

Second Half

Kilgore made all five subs in the second half as the U.S. did well to see the game out. While Colombia continued to make things difficult for the U.S. at moments, Naeher and the defense held strong to preserve a clean sheet, the USA’s third of the tournament. Punters at sites such as online pokies now consider USA hot favorites to win the tournament.



1-Alyssa Naeher; 23-Emily Fox, 4-Naomi Girma, 12-Tierna Davidson, 3-Jenna Nighswonger; 17-Sam Coffey, 15-Korbin Albert (13-Olivia Moultrie, 72), 10-Lindsey Horan (Capt.) (14-Emily Sonnett, 84), 22-Trinity Rodman (9-Midge Purce, 46), 7-Alex Morgan (11-Sophia Smith, 72), 8-Jaedyn Shaw (16-Rose Lavelle, 56)

Substitutes not used: 18-Casey Murphy, 21-Jane Campbell, 2-Abby Dahlkemper, 5-Becky Sauerbrunn, 6-Lynn Williams, 19-Crystal Dunn, 20-Casey Krueger

Head Coach: Twila Kilgore



1-Natalia Giraldo; 17-Carolina Arias, 19-Jorelyn Carabali, 3-Daniela Arias (14-Angela Baron, 46), 2-Manuela Vanegas, 6-Daniela Montoya (Capt.) (8-Marcela Restrepo, 46), 5-Lorena Durango (21-Liana Salazar, 46), 13-Ilana Izquierdo (16-Lady Andrade, 89), 15-Manuela Pavi, 11-Maria Usme, 18-Linda Caicedo

Substitutes not used: 12-Sandra Sepulveda, 22-Derly Castaño, 4-Angie Yanten, 7-Maria Reyes, 9-Ivonne Chacon, 10-Diana Celis, 20-Monica Ramos, 23-Elexa Bahr

Head Coach: Ángelo Marsiglia

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Next Game

The USA will face longtime foe Canada in the semifinals on Wednesday, March 6 (10:15 p.m. ET / 8:15 p.m PT; Paramount+, ESPN+, ESPN Deportes) as the tournament moves to Snapdragon Stadium in San Diego, Calif.

Sophia Smith of us women's team
Sophia Smith battles Colombia’s Angela Baron - Photo by Kiyoshi Mio - USA TODAY Sports
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