Canada will face USA in the Quarterfinals of the 2020 Concacaf Women’s Under-20 Championship on Wednesday 4 March in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The two sides advanced from the Round of 16 on Saturday after Canada won 6:0 over Cuba and USA won 6:0 over St. Lucia.
Tanya Boychuk (two), Maya Ladhani, Jazmine Wilkinson (two), and Léonie Portelance were the goalscorers in Saturday victory in San Cristobal, Dominican Republic. Ladhani and Portelance also hit the crossbar while goalkeeper Kayza Massey and her backline posted the clean sheet. Portelance was Canada’s player of the match.
Canada opened the scoring on the Boychuk penalty in the seventh minute, her third goal of the 2020 tournament. The full play started in front of Canada’s goal after a missed chance by Eliane Valdez was cleared by Emma Regan. The ball moved from Caleigh Boeckx to Ladhani, across to Portelance and then back across to Ladhani who drove to the line. Ladhani then played it back to Boychuk whose first shot was blocked by the defender. As Boychuk maintained possession inside the box, Gianni Borrego fouled her to the ground and referee Karitza Guerra awarded Canada the penalty kick.
In the 13th minute, Wayny Balata played in Ladhani who was off and running into the box again, this time striking the far post with her low shot that beat the goalkeeper Alianne Matamoro, but stayed out. Five minutes later, Balata put Boychuk into the box, but she ultimately lost her balance as she rounded the goalkeeper and could not double the Canada lead.
In the 37th minute, Ladhani made it 2-0 from inside the box shortly after a Portelance free kick. The initial kick knocked off a few players before Ladhani fired her shot off the crossbar and into the goal.
In the 56th minute, Boychuk scored her second goal, again from the penalty spot, but this time after Wayny Balata was fouled inside the box. Incidentally, it marked the first time ever that Canada scored two goals from the penalty spot in the same Concacaf women’s youth match.
Canada were right back on the attack in the second half, with a Portelance cross from the right in the 46th minute already causing more problems for the Cuba defence. Moments later, Portelance had a good run into the box and played the ball to Andersen Williams, but the shot at the back post missed the target.
In the 59th minute, Portelance powered a shot off the crossbar after Shaw had shaked away from her defender. The shot came moments after Canada made a pair of substitutions.
In the 77th minute, Wilkinson had a pair of wonderful touches on the ball from inside the box, but Cuban goalkeeper Matamoro was on the spot to make a pair of fine saves. On the first rush, it was a Portelance cross from the right before the Wilkinson shot was saved; moments later, Williams was the provider with a pass from the left, but again after Wilkinson controled and fired her shot from close range, Matamoro made the save.
Two minutes later, Wilkinson chipped an off balanced shot that nearly hit the top corner, but Matamoro got back in time to make the save.
After those three chances, there was no denying Wilkinson on back-to-back runs into the box. She scored her first goal on a pass from Ladhani in the 82nd minute. A minute later, the two combined again as Ladhani assisted on Wilkinson’s 5-0 goal.
Late in the match, Portelance scored the last goal on a header from inside the box. On the play, Wilkinson turned provider as she sent a ball in from the left side for the awaiting Portelance.
Canada’s starting XI featured Kayza Massey in goal, Emma Regan at right back, Jade Rose and Sonia Walk at centre back, Caleigh Boeckx at left back, and Wayny Balata, Maya Ladhani, Caitlin Shaw, Léonie Portelance, Andersen Williams and Tanya Boychuk from the midfield up through to the attack. In the second half, coach Rhian Wilkinson replaced Balata with Marika Guay (58’), Boychuk with Jazmine Wilkinson (58’), and Regan with Molly Quarry (64’).
With five career goals at the Concacaf Women’s Under-20 Championship, Boychuk moved into a tie for third place on Canada’s all-time list at the competition (tied with Jordyn Huitema and Jenna Richardson, trailing only Jodi-Ann Robinson at seven and Aysha Jamani at nine).
Also of note in the victory, both Wilkinson and Portelance scored their first international youth goals.