A Jamaica win would have eliminated the Americans and sent the Jamaicans into the medal round. The top two teams in each group advance and now both teams will have to wait until Saturday to decide who advances into the medal round. The U.S. (six points) plays winless Uruguay at 7:00 p.m.at the Winnipeg Soccer Complex, and Jamaica (six points) faces off against group-leader Honduras (nine points) at 12:30 p.m. at the Winnipeg Soccer Complex.
"The boys knew how important this match was for us and they played hard," U.S. coach Clive Charles said. "Without this result, we would have had nothing to play for against Uruguay."
Twellman put the U.S. ahead in the 75th minute when his shot from 14 yards out deflected off a Jamaican defender and caught Jamican goalkeeper D. Ricketts out of position. It was Twellman's first goal of the tournament, and came in the first game that Twellman started on the bench. Charles chose to start Conor Casey and Sasha Victorine up front, giving each their first start of the tournament.
Victorine, who looked dangerous in the USA's 2-1 loss to Honduras, continued his fine form and put the U.S. ahead in the 37th minute with a darting header to the upper left corner of the net that gave Ricketts no chance to make the save.
Ryan Futagaki's through ball sprung Nelson Akwari down the right sideline and Akwari sent in a beautifully flighted ball that Victorine finished with authority. The goal was Victorine's first in Under-23 international competition.
Victorine and Twellman's goals would have gone for naught if it were not for Brown's six saves, none of them routine. In a performance reminiscient of Kasey Keller's historic shutout of Brazil in the 1998 Gold Cup, Brown's only blemish came in the 57th minute when he and Dan Califf lost their footing in the box and allowed Ricardo Fuller to poke the ball in from three yards out.
Fuller had several other great opportunities to put Jamaica ahead, but each time Brown was up to the task. In the 19th minute a sprawled out Brown managed to knock Fuller's diving header over the bar.
And in the 41st Brown pulled off what is likely to be the save of the tournament. Ainsworth Kerr broke through the right side of the defense and from the goal line sent a cross to Ricardo Fuller at the six-yard box. With a deft touch, Fuller redirected the ball to Griffits, who was standing all alone three yards from the goal. Griffits appeared to calmly touch the ball into the net when Brown came flying across the goalmouth to make the save.
Brown was forced to make one final save in the 78th minute when Andy Williams carved through the U.S. defense and unleashed a shot from nine yards that Brown pushed away.
Jamaica was reduced to ten men in the 45th minute when Jamaican defender Claude Davis was shown a red card following his reckless challenge on Taylor Twellman. Davis raised his spikes near Twellman's face and referee Carlos Batres wasted no time in reaching for the red card. The ejection capped a difficult half for the Jamaicans, who dominated much of the play but could not put one past Brown.
U.S. UNDER-23 MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM GAME REPORT
|Participants:||U.S. Men's Under-23 Pan American Team vs. Jamaica|
|Competition:||Pan American Games|
|Venue:||Winnipeg Soccer Complex - field A (Winnipeg, Canada)|
|Date:||July 29, 1999 (7:00 p.m. local time kickoff)|
|Weather:||Sunny & Clear|
USA - Sasha Victorine, (Akwari), 37,
JAM - Ricardo Fuller, 57,
USA - Taylor Twellman, (Beasley), 75.
USA - 1-Adin Brown, 2-Dan Califf, 3-Nelson Akwari, 6-Ryan Futagaki (Jason Cropley, 65), 7- Conor Casey (15-Taylor Twellman, 40), 10-Peter Vagenas (Capt.), 12-Sasha Victorine, 13- Carlos Bocanegra, 14-DaMarcus Beasley, 16-Landon Donovan (11-Brian Winters, 43), 17- Steve Shak
JAM - 30-D. D. Ricketts (Capt.), 2-Patrick Graham, 3-S. Thomas, 4-Mark Williams, 5-Claude O'Davis, 19-Steve Green (17-Ray Graham, 79), 7-W. Griffiths, 9-Andrew Williams, 10-Ricardo Fuller, 14-Robert Scarlett (16-Shane Crawford 79), 18- A.C. Kerr
|Landon Donovan (caution)||16,|
|Claude Davis (ejection)||45,|
|Patrick Graham (caution)||47,|
|Robert Scarlett (caution)||53,|
|Andrew Williams (caution)||55,|
|Ryan Futagaki (caution)||59,|
|S Thomas (caution)||60.|