SANDY, Utah (AP) Lynn Williams scored 49 seconds into her national team debut, and Tobin Heath, Christen Press and Samantha Mewis added goals to lead the U.S. over Switzerland 4-0 in an exhibition game Wednesday night.
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U.S. coach Jill Ellis gave five players debuts as the Americans retool ahead of the 2019 World Cup.
Stanford junior midfielder Andi Sullivan and Chicago Red Stars defender Casey Short started, and Williams, a Western NY forward, entered at the start of the second half. Western NY defender Abby Dahlkemper followed in the 72nd minute and Legends FC forward Ashley Hatch in the 76th.
“They deserved some playing time based on how they trained,” Ellis said. “That’s the messaging – how well you do in training gets you playing time. Switzerland is a good team. To come in and be as impactful as they were is a real testament to our potential future with this group.”
The 23-year-old Williams, this year’s National Women’s Soccer League MVP and leading scorer, dashed past a defender, then drew out goalkeeper Gaelle Thalmann and threaded the ball inside a post in the 46th to put the Americans ahead. Williams became the 20th American woman to score in her international debut.
“At the end of the day, it’s soccer and it’s supposed to be fun, so I just tried to make it fun,” Williams said. “In that moment, I was thinking `Get a goal.'”
Heath doubled the lead in the 61st off Crystal Dunn’s cross, her 17th international goal and fifth this year. Press tapped in Kelley O’ Hara’s pass in the 69th for her 36th international goal, and Mewis scored with a header in the 76th.
The U.S. and Switzerland play another exhibition Sunday at Minneapolis.