Sophia Smith Scores 3 Goals as USWNT Beats Uzbekistan in 2022 Friendly

Erin WalshApril 9, 2022

COLUMBUS, OHIO - APRIL 09: Sophia Smith #11 of the United States celebrates her goal during the first half of an International Friendly against Uzbekistan at Lower.com Field on April 09, 2022 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)
Emilee Chinn/Getty Images

The United States women's national team defeated Uzbekistan 9-1 on Saturday at Lower.com Field in Columbus, Ohio, in what was their first friendly since the SheBelieves Cup in February.

It was the first-ever meeting between the two teams, which will meet again Tuesday at Subaru Park in Chester, Pennsylvania.

The U.S. roster featured 17 players who helped the team win the SheBelieves Cup. Veterans Abby Dahlkemper and Lindsey Horan also returned to the roster after missing the tournament, but it was the younger players who carried the team to victory.

Andi Sullivan, who made her 26th appearance for the national team, started things with a goal in the 26th minute off a corner kick to give the Americans a 1-0 lead. Mallory Pugh added a goal a minute later off the kickoff to double the U.S. lead.

U.S. Soccer WNT @USWNT

.<a href="https://twitter.com/sunshine_sully?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@sunshine_sully</a> heads us ahead in Columbus β˜€οΈ <a href="https://t.co/DcJGVvVgeg">pic.twitter.com/DcJGVvVgeg</a>

FOX Soccer @FOXSoccer

πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ <a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a> right from the kick off 😱<a href="https://twitter.com/MalPugh?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MalPugh</a> makes it 2-0 πŸ‘ <a href="https://t.co/bu6lQmjPuI">pic.twitter.com/bu6lQmjPuI</a>

The Americans continued to pile onto their lead when Sophia Smith scored the first of her three goals in the 33rd minute. She put the finishing touch on a pass from Pugh into a wide-open net to give the USWNT a 3-0 lead.

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TOO EASY FOR <a href="https://twitter.com/sophsssmith?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@sophsssmith</a> πŸ™Œ<br><br>This marks Smith's 2️⃣nd international goal for the <a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a> πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ <a href="https://t.co/6uxXQHvHt2">pic.twitter.com/6uxXQHvHt2</a>

About two minutes later, Smith tallied her second goal of the night on a rocket of a shot inside the penalty area to put the U.S. up 4-0.

FOX Soccer @FOXSoccer

THAT'S A BRACE FOR <a href="https://twitter.com/sophsssmith?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@sophsssmith</a> 🀩<a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a> make it 4-0 with this rocket πŸš€ <a href="https://t.co/zq7HKmBj9O">pic.twitter.com/zq7HKmBj9O</a>

The Americans wasted no time in the second half as Catarino Macario scored in the 46th minute to put the U.S. women up 5-0. Smith then netted her third goal of the evening, which marked her first hat trick for the USWNT, in the 56th minute.

Uzbekistan goalkeeper Laylo Tilovova tried to grab a long pass into the penalty area, but Pugh raced to the ball, dribbled around her and set Smith up for a goal in front of a wide-open net.

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MACARIO! πŸ”₯<a href="https://twitter.com/catarinamacario?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@catarinamacario</a> makes it πŸ– for <a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a> πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ <a href="https://t.co/WeGX73s43X">pic.twitter.com/WeGX73s43X</a>

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HAT TRICK FOR <a href="https://twitter.com/sophsssmith?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@sophsssmith</a> 🎩🎩🎩<br><br>Smith has half of the <a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a>'s goals for today so far 😱 <a href="https://t.co/2VyuUJhfdb">pic.twitter.com/2VyuUJhfdb</a>

The goals continued to come in the final 30 minutes of the game as Jae Howell, Ashley Hatch and Ashley Sanchez found the back of the net to put the Americans ahead 9-1.

Uzbekistan's Aziza Norboeva also found the back of the net off a corner kick for the country's only goal of the evening in the 70th minute.

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Uzbekistan finds the back of the net πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Ώ <a href="https://t.co/THv6u5I2JH">pic.twitter.com/THv6u5I2JH</a>

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JAE HOWELL BAGS HER FIRST GOAL FOR THE <a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a> πŸ’° <a href="https://t.co/UcB2z6tlEL">pic.twitter.com/UcB2z6tlEL</a>

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πŸ™Œ <a href="https://twitter.com/ash_hatch33?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ash_hatch33</a> makes it 8️⃣ for the <a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a> πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ <a href="https://t.co/WxvfMWWyOf">pic.twitter.com/WxvfMWWyOf</a>

FOX Soccer @FOXSoccer

That was some serious skill, Ashley Sanchez πŸ”₯<br><br>Cc: <a href="https://twitter.com/USWNT?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@USWNT</a> <a href="https://t.co/4V3bqjHysr">pic.twitter.com/4V3bqjHysr</a>

It was an incredibly impressive evening for the young U.S. players, though Uzbekistan is far from being one of the best teams in the world. Regardless, USWNT head coach Vlatko Andonovski should be pleased with how his team performed, especially on offense.

With qualifiers for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup and 2024 Summer Olympics just three months away, these matches are important for Andonovski to get a look at the younger players who might help fill out his roster this summer.