BATON ROUGE – As the FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup Canada 2014 kicks off on Tuesday with Canada taking on Ghana in the first group match in Toronto, the LSU Soccer program will feature more players in the tournament than any other program in NCAA women’s college soccer with four Tigers competing in the event that runs through the final on Aug. 24.
Wearing the red and white of the host nation will be All-SEC attacking midfielder Emma Fletcher (read feature) and Class of 2014 defender recruit Jordane Carvery (feature), while All-SEC left back Megan Lee (feature) and Class of 2014 goalkeeper recruit Lily Alfeld (feature) will don the black and white of New Zealand as LSU Soccer will be on display on the international stage like never before.
LSU’s four FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup participants leads all NCAA programs as North Carolina, Stanford, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Harvard follow the Tigers with three participants apiece.
“LSU Soccer is a now global brand in our sport, and this World Cup shows just how far we’ve come as a program to reach this stage,” said LSU head coach Brian Lee. “LSU is now seen as a destination for the best players in the United States and abroad as a place where they can reach the highest level as soccer players, both athletically and academically.
“We wish the very best for our four Tigers kicking off the World Cup in Canada this week. We know they will make their countries and our program very proud with their performance on the international stage.”
Fletcher and Carvery will open the tournament on Tuesday when Canada plays host to Ghana in the first group match to kick off at 7 p.m. CT at the National Soccer Stadium in Toronto. Their action continues in Group A when Canada faces Finland on Friday at 7 p.m. CT again in Toronto before wrapping up the group stage against North Korea on Tuesday, Aug. 12, at 6 p.m. CT at the Olympic Stadium in Montreal.
Lee and Alfeld will anchor New Zealand’s defense throughout the tournament as they open play in Group D on Wednesday with their first match against Paraguay that is scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m. CT. New Zealand continues play against France on Saturday at 4 p.m. CT in a match that will also be played in Montreal before wrapping up the group stage against Costa Rica on Wednesday, Aug. 13, at 4 p.m. CT in Toronto.
There are 16 teams playing at the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Canada 2014, as the top two teams in each of the four groups will advance to the knockout stage that begin with the quarterfinal round that will be held on Aug. 16-17 before the semifinal round on Aug. 20 and both the final and third-place game on Aug. 24.