Abby Smith helps U.S. U-23 Women's National Team capture Four Nations Tournament title
March 8, 2013
LA MANGA, Spain - University of Texas freshman goalkeeper Abby Smith and the U.S. Under-23 Women's National Team swept the competition at the 2013 Four Nations Tournament to earn the event championship. The Americans downed Norway 3-1, Sweden 6-0 and England 2-1. Smith's shutout victory against Sweden and her three-save performance versus England allowed the USA squad to claim the title.
The Four Nations championship is the second-straight international event Smith has helped the United States win, following the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Japan last fall.
During the tournament's first game, against Norway, Tiffany McCarty scored the game-wining goal in the 16th minute from the middle of the six-yard box off a service from Stephanie Ochs. The USA took a 2-0 lead in the 33rd minute with a goal by Toni Pressley, who cleaned up a loose ball following a corner kick. Ochs made it a 3-0 lead for the Americans with a goal in the 51st minute. Villanova's Jami Kranich played all 90 minutes at goalkeeper for the USA.
Versus Sweden, Smith earned the start and tallied three saves in the blanking. The 6-0 win marked the U.S. U-23 squad's largest margin of victory in an international match since 2009. Morgan Marlborough scored her first of two goals just two minutes in while Julie Johnston, Zakiya Bywaters, Samantha Mewis and Colleen Williams added a goal each.
The Americans earned the championship with a 2-1 victory over England. Smith played the entire game and recorded three saves. Ochs, who was named the tournament's most valuable player, registered the contest-deciding score in the 71st minute off an assist from Camille Levin. Johnston put the USA squad up 1-0 in the 28th minute, but a goal from Kerys Harrop just before the half knotted the contest.
Smith returns to the Longhorns for their final two spring games of the season, at Texas State on March 23 and at Rice on April 7.