WASHINGTON -- With passage to the knockout round of the CONCACAF Women’s Championship all but assured, the US women’s national team met Haiti at RFK Stadium on Monday, needing only a draw to ensure advancement.
They got much more, thoroughly dominating an overmatched Haitian side for a 6-0 victory to guarantee passage. Haiti — who would have needed a two-goal victory to advance — were eliminated with the result.
The US got their game winner just nine minutes in. Midfielder Meghan Klingenberg controlled the ball 20 yards from goal and played a bending cross towards goal. Haiti goalkeeper Geralda Saintilus parried the service away, but did so directly into the path of an onrushing Carli Lloyd, who chested the ball down and hammered it home.
Tobin Heath, Megan Rapinoe and Abby Wambach each had quality chances in the 10 minutes that followed the goal but all three missed by inches; Haiti defender Kencia Marseille nearly gave the US their second when her headed clearance nearly found the back of her own net in the 29th minute. Her partner at center back, Roselord Borgella, would nab an “own assist” of sorts nine minutes later when her attempt at a clearance was deftly headed home by Wambach for the US’ second.
The Haitians, who had performed admirably in their opening two matches, were clearly overwhelmed from the start: they managed but a single shot in the opening 45, an ambitious attempt from 40 yards out that crossed the endline 20 yards wide of the near post. They’d finish the match without a single shot on goal.
Klingenberg found herself on the end of another mis-hit clearance in the 57th minute for the US’ third goal. Kelley O’Hara played a cross from the near sideline into traffic, which was directed away from goal by a Haiti defender; Klingenberg was in the right place at the right time and made no mistake, smashing it home venomously from 25 yards out for a highlight-reel-worthy finish.
In the 60th, Wambach would nab her second of the match — and 173rd of her career — off another poor Haiti clearance, directed back towards goal by Lloyd for a point-blank finish by Wambach. Christen Press followed suit just four minutes later, pouncing on a loose ball in the box and striking a low, driven effort just inside the far post to make it five.
In the 82nd minute, the US found their sixth and final goal, a clinical finish from Morgan Brian, who hammered home a cross by Press at the top of the box.
The US’ opponent in the semifinals will be determined on Tuesday, as they’ll play the winner of Jamaica vs. Mexico, facing the victor at PPL Park in Philadelphia on Friday.