Led by a second consecutive hat trick from World Cup hero Carli Lloyd the U.S. WNT concluded the September leg of the Victory Tour beating Haiti 8-0 today in Birmingham, Alabama.
Once Haiti replaced Australia on the U.S. WNT World Cup Victory Tour these two matches were never going to be very competitive.
Haiti coach Shek Borkowski said as much before his team dropped a 5-0 decision in the opener Thursday night in Detroit, and the Polish born coach’s point was underscored today when his squad endured a second beating by the World Champions.
Borkowski used this two game series against the World Champions to prep his young side for the upcoming CONCACAF U17 Championships.
U.S. coach Jill Ellis has had to balance the celebratory nature of a victory tour with the need to start winnowing the talent at her disposal down to a 18 player roster for next summer in Rio.
So while fans in Detroit and Alabama were understandably anxious to say thanks and goodbye to some of its heroes, Ellis has a Gold Medal to chase.
Ellis reintroduced Crystal Dunn to the national team with 90 minutes in both games, and the Washington Spirit star looks like a keeper. In Haiti the coach experimented with center back Becky Sauerbrunn in a defensive midfield role. Sauerbrunn had little chance to prove herself against a Haitian side that ran 15 year old Emeline Charles out in Birmingham.
Maybe more can be gleaned next month when the Americans face Brazil in another twin bill. Four more Victory Tour games are scheduled for December, although opponents have not yet been named.
One note that may be of consequence is that Alex Morgan finally found the net. That it took Morgan until the 85th minute of the second game against the young Haitians to hit the target, the strikers smile showed how much her 54th international goal meant to her.
Morgan’s goal made the score 7-0, but after struggling through two injury filled years that included an up and down World Cup, both the forward and her coach will hope today’s goal is just a start.