U.S. U-17s Win CONCACAF Title on Golazo by Nathan Smith

They’d already qualified for the U-17 World Cup with a quarterfinal victory over El Salvador, but the U.S. still wanted to win the regional qualifying tournament for the first time since 1992. Last night, thanks to a spectacular 35-yard curling shot in extra time from defender Nathan Smith, they did just that.

Here’s the goal:

Pinged in off the post, brilliantly—and is it us or is No. 7 (Alfred Koroma) mighty slow to react to his team’s amazing, probable game-winning goal?

In any event, it was a deserved win for the Yanks, who gave up some early chances to the Canucks, but then dominated the game, and added two more goals in extra time for a 3-0 final scoreline.

Pretty much the entire second half was played in Canada’s end, with the U.S. looking technically and athletically superior—but maybe not tactically: The young Americans could not find a way to unlock Canada’s D, which had not surrendered a goal all tournament before last night.

Smith changed that with his 92nd-minute golazo, and then Andrew Oliver and Koroma added goals at the 100- and 119-minute marks, respectively.

Complete highlights here:

The U.S. beat Jamaica 2-0 to advance to last night’s final. All four semifinalists—Canada, Jamaica, Panama and the U.S.—will play in the U-17 World Cup in June.

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