U23 WNT heads to La Manga for friendlies
The U.S. Under-23 Women’s National Team will travel to La Manga, Spain from Feb. 25-March 7 and will play three matches, taking on its counterparts from Japan (March 2), England (March 4) and Norway (March 7).
These will be the first international matches of the year for the U.S. U-23 WNT.
As the trip occurs before NWSL pre-season begins, and in continuing synergy between the NWSL and the U.S. Women’s National Team programs, Seattle Reign head coach Laura Harvey will coach the 22-player squad that features 17 professionals (16 from the NWSL and one currently playing in Iceland), four collegiate players and high school senior in Ashley Sanchez. Three of the players represented the USA at the 2016 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Papua New Guinea in goalkeeper Casey Murphy, midfielder Emily Ogle and Sanchez, who became the first U.S. player to score in a U-17 and U-20 Women’s World Cup in the same cycle.
Of the professional players on the roster, five will be entering their second NWSL seasons while 11 will be starting their rookie years when pre-season camps kick off in mid-March. Defender Adrienne Jordan plays for IBV in Iceland.
Nine players on the roster have represented the USA in a FIFA Women’s World Cup at the youth level while seven have seen training time with the full U.S. Women’s National Team. One of those - Ashley Hatch – has one cap, earned against Switzerland on Oct. 19, 2016, in Sandy, Utah.
While this roster features mostly professional players, the rosters for the events for the remainder of the spring and summer will feature primarily collegiate players as the NWSL season will be in full swing.
Following the trip to La Manga, the next event for the U.S. U-23 WNT will see the team take part in the Thorns Spring Invitational from March 26-April 1 in Portland, Oregon. The USA will take on three NWSL teams at Providence Park, playing the Houston Dash on Sunday, March 26 at 2:30 p.m. PT followed by Portland taking on Chicago at 5 p.m. PT. On Wednesday, March 29, Chicago takes on Houston at 5 p.m. PT and the USA will face the Thorns at 7:30 p.m. PT. The USA closes out the tournament against the Chicago Red Stars on Saturday, April 1 at 5 p.m. and Portland ends the tournament against Houston at 7:30 p.m. PT.
The U-23 WNT will be in La Manga at the same time as the U-20 WNT, which will also be playing three matches.
DEFENDERS (7): Mandy Freeman (Sky Blue FC; West Covina, Calif.), Adrienne Jordan (IBV; Colorado Springs, Colo.), Kristen McNabb (Seattle Reign; Montville, N.J.), Kayla Mills (Sky Blue FC; West Covina, Calif.), Katie Naughton (Chicago Red Stars; Elgin, Ill.), Erica Skroski (Sky Blue FC; New Brunswick, N.J.), Samantha Witteman (NC Courage; Redondo Beach, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Morgan Andrews (Boston Breakers; Milford, N.H.), Tierna Davidson (Stanford; Menlo Park, Calif.), Christina Gibbons (FC Kansas City, Raleigh, N.C.), Tyler Lussi (Portland Thorns; Lutherville, Md.), Emily Ogle (Penn State; Strongsville, Ohio), Margaret Purce (Boston Breakers; Silver Spring, Md.), Ashley Sanchez (SoCal Blues; Monrovia, Calif.), Dani Weatherholt (Orlando Pride; San Clemente, Calif.)
FORWARDS (5): Celeste Boureille (Portland Thorns; San Francisco, Calif.), Makenzy Doniak (NC Courage; Chino Hills, Calif.), Ashley Hatch (NC Courage; Gilbert, Ariz.), Savannah McCaskill (South Carolina; Chapin, S.C.), Arielle Ship (Washington Spirit; Westlake Village, Calif.)
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