CARY, N.C. (Sunday, October 6, 2002) - Australia picked up its first win of the 2002 Nike U.S. Women's Cup, downing Russia on two first half goals, one by sprite midfielder Kelly Golebiowski and the other by Joanne Peters.
Australia looked like the better team throughout the match, and their physical style disrupted the Russians, who fell victim to 15 first half fouls. Golebiowski opened the scoring in the 13th minute with a marvelous weaving run through the defense that was punctuated with a driven strike across the goalkeeper and into the lower right corner from 17 yards out. Peters added the second just two minutes before halftime, finishing from close range after opportunistically running onto the flicked header from substitute Natalie Thomas, who had entered the game just three minutes earlier.
The Australians made three substitutions just before halftime and Russia picked up its game after the break, but could not generate much offense as the center back duo of Anissa Tann and Cheryl Salisbury shut down Natalia Barbachina and Olga Letyushova. The Russians did send in a number of dangerous crosses in the second half, but Matilda goalkeeper Melissa Barbieri was solid in coming off her line to eliminate the chances.
Russia's best chance came in the 89th minute, but Tatiana Skotnikova's shot from 10-yard shot from the left side of the penalty area was pushed off the crossbar by Barbieri.
Australia will finish the tournament against Italy on Wednesday, Oct. 9 at SAS Stadium, with an opportunity to finish in second place.