U.S. MNT, WNT Stay Unbeaten under the Roof
It does not happen too often, but every once in a while the U.S. Women’s and Men’s National Teams have found themselves playing indoors. Due to the timing of the 2012 CONCACAF Olympic Women’s Qualifying Tournament (January) and the location (Vancouver, Canada) it was certainly wise to play this competition indoors as snow and rain has pelted the city since the USA arrived. As has been the case historically, the Americans have seemed comfortable with a roof over their heads.
U.S. Soccer has thrived indoors over the years with an 8-0-2 record. The U.S. WNT has played the majority of games with a perfect 8-0-0 mark, and the U.S. MNT has a World Cup draw to its name as well as a 1-1 tie against Russia in January of 1994 at the since demolished Seattle Kingdome. The U.S. Women are continuing to add to its indoor win totals in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament with 27 goals in two games – a 14-0 win against the Dominican Republic on Friday, followed by a 13-0 victory against Guatemala on Sunday.
The first indoor game was played by the U.S. Women on June 21, 1993, during a 3-0 victory against Canada at the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, Mich.
Here is a rundown of the USA’s indoor performance over the years:
June 21, 1993: U.S. Women 3, Canada 0: During the first indoor game in U.S. Soccer play, the USA shut out its neighbors to the north at the Pontiac Silverdome in Michigan in front of a crowd of 3,572 fans. Joy Fawcett led the way with two goals, and Michele Akers also contributed a goal. The indoor grass was the same playing surface that was used a year later in the 1994 FIFA Men’s World Cup.
Jan. 29, 1994: U.S. Men 1, Russia 1: Central defender Alexi Lalas scored off a header with five minutes remaining as the USA salvaged a draw against Russia in front of 43,651 fans at the Kingdome in Seattle. The U.S. had made it a habit of coming from behind to start the 1994 campaign. The USA rallied to beat Norway 2-1 on Jan. 15 and overcame a deficit against Switzerland for a 1-1 draw on Jan. 22.
June 18, 1994: U.S. Men 1, Switzerland 1: The USA did not get off to the best of starts, but Eric Wynalda provided a game-tying goal late in the first half as the host U.S. earned a draw in the 1994 FIFA World Cup opener in front of 73,425 fans at the Pontiac Silverdome. Wynalda netted a free kick goal from nearly 30 yards out just before halftime, and that helped the USA overcome George Bregy’s earlier goal for Switzerland.
Nov. 2, 2002: U.S. Women 9, Panama 0: Tiffeny Milbrett tied a record with five goals to lead the USA past Panama in its final Group 1 game of the 2002 CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup at Safeco Field in Seattle. With the win, the U.S. found itself one win away from a berth in the 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Eight of the nine goals were scored in the first half, and Milbrett tallied all five of her goals within the first 34 minutes of the match. Shannon MacMillan had two first-half goals, and Tiffany Roberts capped off the first-half scoring. Abby Wambach added an 85th-minute goal.
Nov. 6, 2002: U.S. Women 7, Costa Rica 0: The U.S. clinched a berth to the 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cup on the strength of six second-half goals against Costa Rica at Safeco Field in Seattle. Cindy Parlow led the way by scoring the game’s first three goals. Angela Hucles, Shannon MacMillan and Kristine Lilly also added goals, and the USA benefited from a Costa Rica own goal in the 79th minute.
Oct. 23, 2004: U.S. Women 5, Ireland 0: Abby Wambach scored five goals, all in the second half, to lead the USA past Ireland under the Reliant Stadium roof in Houston in front of 16,991 spectators. U.S. Soccer legend Mia Hamm assisted four of Wambach’s goals. This match was part of a U.S. WNT “Fan Celebration Tour” throughout the country that included matches against Denmark, Iceland, Ireland, Mexico and New Zealand.
Oct. 13, 2007: U.S. Women 5, Mexico 1: The U.S. scored five unanswered goals and overcame an early deficit en route to the international friendly win at the Edward Jones Domes in St. Louis in front of 10,861 fans. Abby Wambach had two goals and an assist, and her first goal in the 57th minute proved to be the game-winner. Mexico’s Evelyn Lopez gained the early lead in the 3rd minute, but Heather O’Reilly equalized in the 32nd minute to go into the half at 1-1. Wambach, Kristine Lilly, Wambach again and Carli Lloyd turned the match into a blowout.
Dec. 17, 2008: U.S. Women 1, China 0: The USA wrapped up its post-Olympic Achieve Your Gold Tour with its 33rd win of the year in front of 11,933 fans at Ford Field in Detroit. Heather O’Reilly scored the game’s lone goal in the 32nd minute as the USA wrapped up the year with a 33-1-2 record. The U.S. Women won all five tournaments they participated in, including the 2008 Olympics in China. The goal in Detroit gave O’Reilly 10 goals and 10 assists on the year making her just the sixth U.S. WNT player to notch double figures in goals and assists in a calendar year.
Jan. 20, 2012: U.S. Women 14, Dominican Republic 0: It was a banner day offensively for the USA, which tallied a program-best 14 goals in a game, to rout the Dominican Republic in its first game of the 2012 CONCACAF Olympic Women’s Qualifying Tournament. The 14 goals topped the previous mark of 12. Amy Rodriguez led the way by scoring five goals in a 30-minute span in the second half. Heather O’Reilly added her first hat trick.
Jan. 22, 2012: U.S. Women 13, Guatemala 0: The U.S. qualified for the semifinals of the 2012 CONCACAF Olympic Women’s Qualifying Tournament with another rout, topping Guatemala in Group B play at BC Place Stadium in Vancouver, Canada. Vancouver native Sydney Leroux scored five second-half goals in only her second appearance with the U.S. Women. Abby Wambach had the USA’s first two tallies as she surpassed German legend Birgit Prinz with 129 goals to move into third on the all-time women’s scoring list.