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U.S. Soccer Wire: Hamm Fuels U.S. in Algarve Opener


HAMM’S GOAL, THREE ASSISTS DELIVER WIN; TEAM FACES DENMARK, SWEDEN NEXT: U.S. Women’s National Team forward Mia Hamm showed once again that she can pass as well as score, dishing for three assists and scoring on a penalty kick in the first half of the U.S. Women's National Team's dominating 5-1 win over France in the opening game of the 2004 Algarve Cup.  Hamm assisted on the USA's first goal to Abby Wambach, then nailed a penalty kick and set up two Angela Hucles goals, all in the first 33 minutes of the game. It was Wambach's 20th goal in just 31 career games as she kept up her blistering scoring pace at the international level. Hucles second goal of the game, and third of her career, gave her more goals in a three-minute span than she had scored in her previous 29 games of her national team career. The USA scored on five of its first six shots, adding the last goal just seconds after the break as Lindsay Tarpley scored one minute and 35 seconds after stepping on the field as a halftime substitute. The USA carries a +4 goals against average into its next Group A match against Denmark, a large margin for the usually closely contested Algarve Cup.  The USA faces the Danes, 1-0 losers to Sweden in the first Group A match of the day, tomorrow (March 16) at 1:45 p.m. local / 8:45 a.m. ET.  Fans can follow the match live on ussoccer.com's MatchTracker, presented by Philips Electronics.  Sweden, which got a 48th minute goal from Salina Olsson, almost lost its lead in the 55th minute, but Denmark's Janni Lund Johansen saw her penalty kick saved by Swedish goalkeeper Sofia Lundgren, who then made another brilliant save on the rebound shot to preserve the match for her team.
WNT Results
Date            Opponent     Result     U.S. Goal Scorers
March 14    France          5-1 W    Wambach, Hamm, Hucles (2), Tarpley
WNT Schedule
Date            Opponent             City                              Kickoff (local / ET)
March 16    Denmark               Quarteira, Portugal       1:45 p.m. / 8:45 a.m.
March 18    Sweden                 Lagos, Portugal            4:15 p.m. / 11:15 a.m.
March 20    Placement Match   TBD                            TBD

U.S. WOMEN HEADED TO ALBUQUERQUE TO FACE FELLOW OLYMPIAN MEXICO ON MAY 9: The U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team will play its second domestic match of 2004 against fellow CONCACAF Olympic qualifier Mexico on Sunday, May 9, at University Stadium on the campus of the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 at 1 p.m. MT as fans can watch the U.S. women in their continuing preparation for the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece. The match will be the first ever for the U.S. Women’s National Team in New Mexico, which will become the 30th state, along with the District of Columbia, to host a U.S. women’s match.  The U.S. Men’s National Team has played in New Mexico just once prior, dropping a 2-0 decision to Chile at University Stadium on April 30, 1994, less than two months prior to the 1994 World Cup. Tickets ranging in price levels from $18 to $40 are on sale now by calling 505-925-5858 or (toll free) 1-800-905-3315, or by visiting any Raley's or Western Warehouse stores in Albuquerque and Santa Fe. Groups of 20 or more can order discounted tickets through U.S. Soccer by calling 312-528-1290.

ARENA TO TALK WORLD CUP QUALIFYING ON ESPN.COM TUESDAY AT 2:30 P.M. ET: Coming off a 1-1 draw with an inspired and spirited Haiti National Team on March 13 in an international friendly at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Fla., U.S. Men’s National Team manager Bruce Arena will discuss the team’s current progress and look ahead to World Cup Qualifying on an espn.com chat tomorrow (March 16) at 2:30 p.m. ET.  With the draw, the USA’s all-time record against Haiti now stands at 5-6-4. The U.S. has yet to obtain its first victory in 2004, with their record after three games at 0-1-2. The Haitians were first on the scoreboard in the 69th minute, as midfielder Alexander Boucicot beat U.S. ‘keeper Kevin Hartman from 16 yards out to the lower left corner after Coriolan had slipped a pass from midfield through the U.S. defense. The U.S. was able to salvage the tie in the 94th minute when a free kick into the crowded box slipped through to the left post.  Carlos Bocanegra pushed the ball across the goal mouth to a wide-open Califf, who chested it into the net. Califf now has 12 international appearances for the U.S., with that being the first full international goal of his career.

GRENADA ADVANCES TO SECOND ROUND, WILL FACE U.S. ON JUNE 13 & 20: Grenada finished off Guyana yesterday with a 3-1 win that gave them an 8-1 aggregate edge in their two-game series of 2006 World Cup Qualifying First Round Caribbean Zone. Grenada will now face the U.S. MNT on June 13 in Group 1 as the U.S. begin their quest to qualify for a fifth consecutive World Cup with a home match. The location and time of the match is still to be determined. The U.S. will play the away leg of their preliminary round series on June 20. Ricky Charles gave Grenada a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute, but Guyana struck back to equalize on a goal from Carey Harris in the 30th minute. Jason Roberts grabbed the game winner in the 70th minute before Byron Bubb put the game away in the 88th minute. In the first match, Grenada earned an impressive 5-0 victory over visiting Guyana at the National Stadium in St. George’s on Feb. 28. Nigel Bishop scored in the 34th minute and Kennedy Phillip added another just five minutes later to give the hosts a 2-0 lead, while Anthony Augustine, Nixon Modeste and Dennis Rennie all scored in the second half for the final result.

U.S. MEN TO TRAVEL TO POLAND FOR MATCH IN PLOCK ON MARCH 31: The U.S. Men’s National Team will travel to Poland for a 2002 World Cup rematch in Plock, a city in central Poland about 60 miles northwest of Warsaw (8:30 p.m. local / 1:30 p.m. ET – live on ESPN2). As part of their preparation for CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying this summer, the U.S. will also play games on April 28 and May 26 at sites and against opponents still to be finalized. Following their two-game World Cup qualifying series on June 13 and June 20 against Grenada, U.S. Soccer has also scheduled a return domestic match for the U.S. Men against Poland on July 11 at a site yet to be determined. The U.S. holds a 4-7-1 record against the European nation, with the last match a 3-1 loss in the opening round of the 2002 World Cup in Daejeon, South Korea. In their last match in Poland, the U.S. came away with a 3-2 win in Warsaw on Oct. 10, 1990.

U.S. MEN’S HOME, AWAY MATCH DATES SET FOR WORLD CUP QUALIFYING SEMIFINALS: CONCACAF, the governing body of soccer for the North American, Central American and Caribbean region, announced the results of the draw to determine the schedule and order of matches of the semifinal round of 2006 World Cup Qualifying last week.  The United States, should it advance to the semi-final round, would open the four-team, six-match round robin competition on the road on Aug. 18 in Jamaica or Haiti. The first U.S. home game is scheduled for Sept. 4, likely against El Salvador or Bermuda. The U.S. would play three of their first four games on the road before closing with home matches on Oct. 13 and November 17.  Sites for all of the U.S. World Cup qualifying games have yet to be determined.
2004 MNT Schedule
 
* should the U.S. advance to the semi-final round of World Cup qualifying

– U.S. WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE –

U.S. WOMEN TO OPEN DOMESTIC SCHEDULE VS. BRAZIL IN BIRMINGHAM ON APRIL 24: The U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team will play its first domestic match of 2004 against Brazil on Saturday, April 24, at Legion Field in Birmingham, Alabama.  The game kicks off at 12 p.m. CT and will be broadcast live on ESPN2 as U.S. fans will get their first look at the core of players who will participate in the 2004 Olympics, should the USA qualify in Costa Rica this week. Advance tickets ranging in price levels from $18 to $50 are on sale now at all Ticketmaster outlets throughout Alabama (including Publix, Coconuts and Wherehouse Music), by phone at 1-800-277-1700, and online at ussoccer.com.  Groups of 20 or more can order through the Alabama Sports Foundation at 205-967-4745. The match at the historic stadium will be the second trip in as many years to Birmingham, home of U.S. defender Cat Reddick.  The USA trounced England 6-0 in May 2003 as Reddick played 90 minutes in her first appearance for the national team in the city where she was a high-school All-American at Briarwood Christian School and two-time Alabama Girl’s Soccer Player of the Year.

– U.S. YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –

U-18 MEN DUMP VIRGINIA 4-1, GO 1-1-1 IN BRADENTON: The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team finished up its camp at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., on Friday, going 1-1-1 during the week. The U-18s struggled in their first match against the University of Notre Dame on March 9, falling 3-0 to one of the nation’s top collegiate programs. The U.S. had its chances to score and actually outshot Notre Dame, but the Irish did a better job of finishing its opportunities to snag the victory. Bob Jenkins’ squad bounced back two days later when they beat the University of Virginia 4-1, getting goals from Christian Jimenez, Mike Grella, Danny Szetela and Charlie Davies. In their final and most anticipated match of the week, the U-18s battled the U-17 ’88 MNT to a 0-0 draw. The Under-18 MNT will get together next for the 25th Dallas Cup, where they will play in the Super Group bracket from April 4-11.
U-18 MNT Results
Date             Opponent                     Result     U.S. Goal Scorers
March 9       Univ. of Notre Dame     0-3 L     ---
March 11     Univ. of Virginia            4-1 W    Jimenez, Grella, Szetela, Davies
March 12     U-17 ’88 MNT             0-0 T     ---

YOUNGER U-17s POST UNDEFEATED MARK IN FOUR MATCHES: The U.S. Under-17 ’88 Men’s National Team went undefeated during their four matches this week, while the U-17 ’87 MNT got a victory in their only match yesterday (March 14). The ‘88s played their first of two games against other youth national teams as they beat the U-15 MNT 2-1 on March 9 behind goals from Michael Stephens and Jeremy Hall. Three days later, the ‘88s played one of their best matches since coming together last fall, getting a 0-0 draw in a hotly contested match against the U-18 MNT, compiled of players mainly of ‘87s in Residency. The ‘88s finished the week with two matches against the U-18 Renegades in two days, snagging shutout wins in both games. On March 13, Brett King scored two goals and Cesar Nunez and Taylor Waspi each tallied one in a 4-0 victory. Yesterday in the rematch, goals by Carlos Borja and Hall gave the ‘88s a 2-0 win. In their only match of the week, the ‘87s downed Virginia Tech 3-0 behind two goals from Freddy Adu, both off services from Danny Szetela, and one from Rodrigo Hidalgo, giving him a team-leading seven goals on the year.
U-17 ’88 MNT Results
Date             Opponent               Result      U.S. Goal Scorers
March 9       U-15 MNT             2-1 W     Stephens, Hall
March 12     U-18 MNT             0-0 T      ---
March 13     U-18 Renegades     4-0 W     King (2), Nunez, Waspi
March 14     U-18 Renegades     2-0 W     Borja, Hall
U-17 ’87 MNT Results
Date             Opponent               Result     U.S. Goal Scorers
March 14     Virginia Tech          3-0 W     Adu (2), Hidalgo

U-15 BOYS END BRADENTON CAMP WITH TRIO OF WINS AGAINST OLDER TEAMS: The Under-15 Boys National Team finished up their week-long training camp in Bradenton, Fla., with three victories over older teams after starting off with a tough 2-1 loss to the U-17 MNT on March 9. After falling behind by a goal, Andrew Gillambardo notched the equalizer in the 39th minute, but the U-17s got the game winner in the second half. The U-15s started their winning streak on March 11, beating the IMG U-17 3-1 behind two goals from Peri Mesosevic and one from Joseph Sorrentino. The next two days, the U-15s beat two local club teams by identical 2-1 scores. Sorrentino scored both goals against the U-16 Clearwater Chargers on Friday (Mach 12), while Guissepe Carotenuto and John Tardy provided the goals against the Boca Juniors.
U-15 BNT Results
Date            Opponent                Result       U.S. Goal Scorers
March 9       U-17 MNT             1-2 L       Gillambardo
March 11     IMG U-17s             3-1 W     Mesosevic (2), Sorrentino
March 12     U-16 Clearwater     2-1 W     Sorrentino (2)
March 13     Boca Juniors            2-1 W     Carotenuto, Tardy

U-17 WOMEN CRUISE TO 4-0 RECORD IN FLORIDA: The U.S. Under-17 Women’s National Team won all four games during their camp this past week in Bradenton, Fla., and increased their unbeaten streak against international competition to 5-0-0 with victories over Canada and Germany. The U-17s opened the week on March 7 with a dominating performance over the IMG U-18s, winning 5-0 behind goals by Hayley Siegel, Lauren Cheney, Kylee Rossi and a pair from Amy Rodriguez. Two days later, the U.S. scored five goals again in a 5-2 victory over Canada. Cydne Currie led the way with a hat trick sandwhiched between goals by Kasey Moore and Kiara Bosio. On March 11, midfielder Courtney Lewis scored the winning goal moments into the second half to give the U-17s a 1-0 win over the U-16 GNT. In their last game against Germany the following day, Ashley Myers and Rodriguez each scored for a 2-1 victory.
U-17 WNT Results
Date             Opponent         Result      U.S. Goal Scorers
March 7       IMG U-18        5-0 W     Siegel, Cheney, Rossi, Rodriguez (2)
March 9       Canada             5-2 W     Moore, Currie (3), Bosio
March 11     U-16 GNT       1-0 W     Lewis
March 12     Germany           2-1 W     Rodriguez, Myers

U-16 GIRLS GRAB WINS OVER CANADA, GERMANY U-17s: The U.S. Under-16 Girls National Team notched two victories against older international competition this past week in Bradenton, Fla., as they beat both Germany and Canada’s U-17 squads. Jessica McDonald and Nikki Washington led the way for the U-16s on March 9 in a 2-0 shutout win over Germany. Two days later, the U-16s pushed the U-17 WNT until the final whistle and had two shots cleared off the line in the closing minutes, but eventual fell 1-0. They bounced back on March 12, beating Canada in a dominating performance to close out their week-long camp. McDonald scored her second and third goals of the week, while Olivia West and Carolyn Blank each notched a goal.
U-16 GNT Results
Date             Opponent             Result      U.S. Goal Scorers
March 9       Germany U-17      2-0 W     McDonald, Washington
March 11     U-17 WNT           0-1 L      ---
March 12     Canada U-17        4-0 W     McDonald (2), West, Blank

U-19 WNT SPLIT TO DEFEAT PAIR OF COLLEGE TEAMS IN CARSON: The U.S. Under-19 Women’s National Team split into two teams and played games against the University of Colorado and Loyola Marymount University on March 13 to cap off their week long camp at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Against Colorado, Angie Woznuk and Bristyn Davis each notched two goals and Jennifer Redmond added one as the U.S. dominated the Buffs 5-1. In the other match, Rebecca Moros, Kerri Hanks and Stacy Lindstrom all scored to lead the U.S. to a 3-0 victory over Loyola Marymount. The U-19s will be back in Carson from April 2-11, for an international tournament against Holland, Japan and China.
U-19 WNT Results
Date             Opponent                  Result      U.S. Goal Scorers
March 13     Univ. of Colorado      5-1 W     Woznuk (2), Davis (2), Redmond
March 13     Loyola Marymount     3-0 W     Moros, Hanks, Lindstrom

– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –

1996 WOMEN’S OLYMPIC TEAM NOMINATED FOR REVIVED USOC HALL OF FAME: The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) announced last week the return of the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame, which has been inactive since 1992. Fans can log onto usolympicteam.com, the official site of the U.S. Olympic Team, until April 14 to vote for one of 19 individual finalists and one of six team finalists, including the 1996 U.S. Women’s Olympic Team that took the first ever gold medal in the sport. The U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame returns to its roots in Chicago where the charter class was enshrined in 1983, with such Olympic legends as Bob Beamon, Cassius Clay, Peggy Fleming, Jesse Owens, Wilma Rudolph, Mark Spitz, Jim Thorpe and the 1980 Hockey Team. Annual additions continued through 1992, adding Olympic legends such as Donna de Varona, Dorothy Hamill, Sugar Ray Leonard, Carl Lewis, Greg Louganis, Phil Mahre, and Mary Lou Retton. The Hall of Fame consists of 151 Distinguished Members, including 68 athletes from individual sports, five teams and 11 special contributors.

PARALYMPIC TEAM TO CONDUCT TRIALIST CAMP THIS WEEK IN CHULA VISTA: The U.S. Paralympic Soccer Team began an eight-day training camp on March 13 at the ARCO Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., as the team prepares for the 2004 Paralympic Games, which will be played in Athens this summer from Sept. 19-27 at the Helliniko Olympic Complex. A total of 15 players have been called into camp by head coach Jay Hoffman, including a number of trialists who will report to camp tomorrow (March 16) in effort to qualify for the team's overall player pool. Qualifying players can join the team's official player pool at any time until May 16, at which time the team's final player pool must be submitted for a player to be eligible for participation in Greece this summer. This is the team's second camp since qualifying for the Paralympic Games last October at the World Championship, coming on the heels of a February training camp. The U.S. qualified for this summer's Paralympic Games in October 2003, at the Paralympic Soccer World Championship in Argentina, and will take part in a Paralympic International Tournament in Holland from April 8-13. Paralympics soccer is played seven-a-side and on smaller fields by athletes with Cerebral Palsy, traumatic brain injury or stroke survivors.
Paralympic Team Roster
GOALKEEPERS (1): Keith Johnson (Anchorage, Ala.); DEFENDERS (3): John Clore (Culpeper, Va.), Jon McCullough (Washington, D.C.), John Theobald (Syracuse, N.Y.); MIDFIELDERS (8): Jay Aprea (Boston, Mass.), Will Estrada (Albany, N.Y.), Tom Latsch (Cleveland, Ohio), Colture McArtle (Tucson, Ariz.), Josh McKinney (Princeton, W.V.), Jason Slemons (Eagle River, Ala.), Chris Wolf (Gainesville, Fla.), David Woosnam (Roswell, Ga.); FORWARDS (3): Josh Blue (Denver, Colo.), Bosco Hawkins (Anchorage, Ala.), Eli Wolff (Boston, Mass.).

*** U.S. SOCCER SPOTLIGHT ***

PEAK PERFORMER: Proving once again that she can take over a game in a matter of minutes, Mia Hamm manhandled France yesterday by supplying a goal and three assists to give the U.S. a 4-0 lead by the 33rd minute. Game over. With that performance, Hamm earned a well-deserved spot on the U.S. bench for the second half to watch the U.S. go on to a 5-1 win in the opener of the Algarve Cup.

MARQUEE MATCH-UP: If the U.S. Women’s National Team can pull out two more wins over European foes this week – vs. Denmark tomorrow (March 16) and vs. Sweden on Thursday (March 18) – they’ll be playing for their third Algarve Cup title on Saturday (March 20). If they win the whole sha-bang, it will be their third major trophy in as many months, having won the Four Nations Tournament in China in January and the CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Costa Rica earlier this month.

SOCCER SHOCKER: Manchester United had another stunning result last weekend, giving up a season-high four goals in falling 4-1 to Claudio Reyna and City in the Manchester derby. With the result, the team is 0-2-2 in its last four league matches, slipping to 12 points behind leader Arsenal in the Premiership table. Man-U now has a goals against average of over 1.00 for the first time in the 2003-04 season.

QUOTABLE: “I thought Haiti was the better team tonight.  They simply outfought us for 95 minutes.”
           --U.S. MNT head coach Bruce Arena, after taking a 1-0 deficit into stoppage time before eeking out a 1-1 tie with Haiti in Miami

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