RECAP: PNT Drops Tight Contest 2-1 to England in World Championships Quarterfinal
USA Enters Placement Bracket After One of “Best Matches” in Paralympic Soccer History
SAN LUIS, Argentina (Sept. 18, 2017) – The U.S. Paralympic National Team fell 2-1 to England in a hard-fought quarterfinal match at the 2017 IFCPF CP Football World Championships. Tournament organizers called the “amazing” contest one of the best matches in Paralympic soccer history. With the loss, the USA heads to the placement bracket to compete for fifth place on Wednesday against either Brazil or Iran.
Adam Ballou scored for the U.S., while goalkeeper Sean Boyle and defender David Garza put on another stellar defensive performance.
After an exceptional match against Ukraine, Boyle once again put on a show in the quarterfinals, making several excellent stops on the dangerous English attack. Garza also delivered a stand-out performance to keep the English scoreless in a half for the first time in the tournament. The partnership was on full display in the 17th minute when a beautiful pass from Oliver Nugent to David Porcher gave England one of its best chances of the day, but Boyle charged the ball as Garza made a nice tackle to quash the opportunity.
A long clear from Garza near the end of the first half found Seth Jahn near the right sideline. After an English defender poked the ball out, he tossed a long throw-in to Andrew Bremer near the top right corner of the goal box. Bremer fought off a defender to one-time a cross to Ballou in front of the net and the veteran forward knocked it inside the near post to give the USA a 1-0 lead it would carry into the second half.
In the 36th minute, the English attack finally broke through. Bremer made a stop on an initial shot from Michael Barker and Boyle halted a secondary attempt, but a confusing flurry of rebounds and diving bodies at the goal line saw George Fletcher touch it in for England. The English took the lead in the 45th minute, when second half substitute Jack Rutter dribbled upfield and launched a shot from the top of the box past an outstretched Boyle that provided the final 2-1 margin.
The USA had a few excellent late opportunities to equalize, but the red, white and blue were unable to convert. In the 29th minute, Mayhugh stole the ball on the right sideline and crossed to Jahn streaking towards the net, but English goalkeeper Giles Moore got a piece of it and knocked it over the net. In the 31st, Kevin Hensley launched a long cross from the sideline to Jahn, stationed near the left post. Jahn hit an on-target one-timed header, but Moore once again halted the attempt and the USA’s march toward the semifinals.
U.S. Paralympic National Team Match Report
Match: United States PNT v. England PNT
Date: Monday, September 18, 2017
Competition: 2017 IFCPF CP Football World Championships
Venue: Estadio Juan Gilberto Funes
Kickoff: 12:30 p.m. ART (11:30 a.m. ET)
Weather: 80 degrees, sunny
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 1 0 1
ENG 0 2 2
USA – Adam Ballou (Andrew Bremer) 24th minute
ENG – George Fletcher 36
ENG – Jack Rutter 45
USA: 1-Sean Boyle, 8-Andrew Bremer, 14-David Garza, 10-Kevin Hensley (Capt.), 7-Adam Ballou (2-Cameron DeLillo, 46), 11-Nick Mayhugh, 9-Seth Jahn
Subs Not Used: 3-Greg Brigman, 4-Tyler Bennett, 5-Bryce Boarman, 6-Ben Lindau, 12-Marc Estrella, 13-Mason Abbiate
Head Coach: Stuart Sharp
ENG: 1-Giles Moore, 5-Emyle Rudder (2-Liam Irons, 31), 6-Matt Crossen, 7-Michael Barker (Capt.), 9-David Porcher (4-James Blackwell, 58), 10-George Fletcher, 11-Oliver Nugent (8-Jack Rutter, 31)
Subs Not Used: 3-Harry Baker, 12-Dale Smith, 13-Ryan Kay, 14-Lewis Tribe
Head Coach: Andy Smith
Stats Summary: USA / ENG
Shots on Goal: 5/16
Corner Kicks: 6/11
USA – Adam Ballou (Caution) 2nd minute
USA – Nick Mayhugh (Caution) 39
USA – Seth Jahn (Caution) 59
Referee – Hector Bondia
Assistant Referee 1 – Unknown
Assistant Referee 2 – Unknown