It was another easy win for the American kids, as they rolled over Nicaragua in in the CONCACAF U-20 round of 16, setting up a critical quarterfinal against Costa Rica.
Quinn Sullivan scored a brace, while Diego Luna and Jalen Neal also found the back of the Nicaraguan net. Dylan Alberto Pinedo Romero also got his name on the board but would have preferred not to as his was an own-goal.
United States 5 – 0 Nicaragua
Although the Americans dominated the game, it took until extra time in the first half before the deadlock was broken. Luna picked up the ball on the top of the 18 yard box, sprinted forward past a couple defenders and cut it back for Sullivan to head home from seven yards out.
After the intermission the Yanks got back to work again immediately and in the 56th minute doubled the lead.
As Sullivan fought with Kurt Thomas for the ball, the Nicaraguan defender grabbed a handful of the Philadelphia Union’s teenager shirt and brought him down in the box. Luna placed the ball on the spot and sent Miguel Rodriguez the wrong way.
The Yanks and Sullivan struck again nine minutes later when Cade Cowell squared the perfect ball for the tap-in five yards out.
With the game already done and dusted, Los Pinoleros got in on the action, Romero in particular, when he deflected Caden Clark’s shot past his own keeper.
And when there were just five minutes left on the clock, LA Galaxy’s Neal rounded off the goals with a move that started from a free kick and ended up at the defender’s feet. He scored from the six yard line after the keeper was unable to hold onto the ball.
The victory takes the American boys into the quarter finals where they’ll take on Costa Rica on Tuesday night. Los Ticos beat Trinidad & Tobago 4-1 to earn their spot.