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U-20 WNT Goes 1-1-1 in Texas

The U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team picked up a win, a loss and a tie, against three college teams in College Station, Texas, over March 24-28 as U.S. head coach Jillian Ellis continues to experiment with her player pool in advance of the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, which will be staged in the fall of next year. The USA played the first of the three matches against the collegiate sides, all currently embroiled in their spring seasons against BYU on March 24, and for the second straight year, the Cougars downed the U-20s, this time 2-0. Ellis used her entire roster in the match as both teams substituted freely, but the USA could not get on the board despite locking up BYU on shots at nine a piece. The U-20s rebounded with a 5-0 win over SMU on March 25 as five different players scored. Rachel Given opened the scoring in the 24th minute, and the half ended with the USA leading, 1-0. The USA struck for two goals in a three-minute span started in the 60th when Michelle Enyeart got on the board followed by a goal from Allie Sadow. Ellie Reed tallied in the 64th minute and Rachel Wood finished the scoring in the 84th minute. The USA took on host Texas A&M on March 28 and had to rally with two goals in the last five minutes to pull out a 3-3 draw with the defending Big-12 champs. The USA did score first, tallying just 50 seconds into the game through Reed as she dribbled around the Aggie goalkeeper and finished into an open net from a sharp angle. A&M tied the game on a goal from Melissa Garey in the 18th minute. The USA then gave up a penalty kick in the 23rd minute that was converted by former U.S. U-21 Ashlee Pistorius for the 2-1 lead. Pistorius scored again in the 65th minute, this time on a header to give A&M a two-goal lead. The USA pushed more numbers forward as the match wore on and were rewarded with two goals, the first coming from Rachel Given in the 85th minute as she got behind the Aggie defense to slot home. The tying goal came with just seconds left in regulation as Ashlee Elliot hit a hard drive from 15 yards out. The shot deflected off the fingertips of a stretching Aggie goalkeeper Kristin Arnold, hit post, and bounced just over the goal line. The U-20s will return to action in May with a trip to Manchester, England to play several top English women’s clubs.

Date            Opponent       Score       U.S. Goal Scorers
March 24    BYU                  0-2 L        --
March 25    SMU                 5-0 W      Given, Enyeart, Sadow, Reed, Wood
March 28    Texas A&M      3-3 T       Reed, Given, Elliot