Feb. 9, 2013
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Former Stanford star Christen Press scored two goals and assisted on another in a spectacular U.S. national team debut Saturday in a 4-1 victory over Scotland.
The friendly, which opened the U.S. coaching era of Tom Sermanni, was played before 18,656 at EverBank Field.
Press, the 2010 Hermann Trophy winner as college soccer's top player, becomes the third player to score twice in her first U.S. national team match. She is the 17th player overall to score a goal in her first women's national-team match.
Cindy Parlow (Jan. 14, 1996; 8-1 win against Russia) and Sherrill Kester (Jan. 7, 2000; 8-1 win against the Czech Republic) also scored twice in their debuts.
According to the match summary posted on ussoccer.com:
"Press, who was named the Budweiser Woman of the Match, gave the U.S. an early lead in the 13th minute. Right back Ali Krieger drove a long free kick into the penalty box and Scotland's defense failed to clear it. It bounced only to the edge of the box and Press struck a first-time left footed half-volley that sailed past Scotland goalkeeper Gemma Fay for the 1-0 lead.
"She then got her second goal in the 32nd minute when Tobin Heath served up a precision left-footed cross from the left flank. Press made a perfectly timed run to slip behind her defender at the far past and headed the ball back across the goal into the lower left corner.
"Shannon Boxx gave the USA a 3-0 lead in the 52nd minute when Press lifted a pass to her from the left corner of the penalty area. Boxx took a deft left-footed touch, brought the ball to her right and smashed her shot into the upper left corner of the goal from 25 yards out."
Press started the match as an outside right midfielder and was substituted in the 73rd minute by Kristie Mewis, who also earned her first cap, as did defender Julie Johnston, out of Santa Clara.
Press was called into her first full national-team camp by then-coach Pia Sundhage in preparation for the 2012 Olympics in London and was brought along as an alternate, but did not see action.
In all, three former Stanford players were among the 17 players used by Sermanni. Kelley O'Hara '10 started at outside back and goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart '04 played in the second half, earning her 47th cap.
Press '11 is Stanford's all-time leading scorer, holding school records in career goals (71), assists (41), and points (183).
She was the Women's Professional Soccer Rookie of the Year in 2011 for Florida-based MagicJack and is about to begin her second season in Sweden, now for Tyreso.