Tue, Sep 15, 2009 - Page 20 News List

DEAFLYMPICS TAIPEI 2009: US women strike soccer gold in Taipei

SYMMETRIC WARFARE The US shut out Germany 4-0 to win the women’s soccer title yesterday, while the German men defeated France by the same score to take bronze

By Dave Carroll  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taiwan’s Wen Chih-hsuan gestures during the men’s singles table tennis final in Taipei yesterday. Wen Chih-hsuan defeated Wang Cong of China to win Taiwan’s 11th gold medal of the Taipei Deaflympics.

PHOTO: LIN CHENG-KUNG, TAIPEI TIMES

Liza Offreda and Katherine Ward scored goals good enough to grace any final, while Felicia Schroeder grabbed a brace as the US struck gold in the Deaflympics women’s soccer final at Taipei Municipal Stadium yesterday.

The US grabbed a 4-0 victory over Germany that was lit up after a drab first half by the skillful finishes applied by Offreda and Ward.

In the first half, neither team managed to take a grip on the match. Schroeder and Kelly O’Steen were controlling the midfield area, but the US were failing to create chances for Shaquana McDonough, playing up front after her stellar defensive efforts against Britain in the semi-final.

In the 23rd minute, McDonough almost broke the deadlock when her shot had to be tipped onto the bar by German goalkeeper Nicole Loeck.

Then, in the 31st minute, Ger­many had a chance to create some pressure on the US goal when Laura Moller was fouled by Megan Johnston on the edge of the area, but Stefanie Ziegler wasted the free-kick, hitting over the German attackers’ heads and wide past the far post.

At halftime the US coach changed the pattern of the match, pushing Katie Romano forward to partner McDonough in attack and gambling on playing with three at the back, with O’Steen sitting deep in midfield to protect the defense.

The gamble paid off, with the US dominating possession and territory and in the 61st minute they went ahead.

Schroeder played a ball out to the right that McDonough left for Offreda, who saw the onrushing Loeck and chipped the ball over the advancing keeper’s reach and into the far corner of the net.

It was a fantastic strike in a match that was now being played in the German half, and 13 minutes later the US doubled their lead.

The German defense failed to clear the ball from a corner and it pinged around the area before Schroeder managed to poke it into the bottom corner.

In the 81st minute there was another piece of magic when Ward collected the ball 25m from goal, spotted that Loeck was off her line by a few meters and teed up a volley that lobbed the keeper, dipping just under the crossbar to make it 3-0.

Five minutes later, Schroeder grabbed her second and the US’ fourth when she headed Offreda’s corner from the left into the bottom corner of the German net, completing a great win and ensuring the US would take home the gold medal.

Earlier yesterday at Yingfeng Sports Field in the men’s soccer tournament, Germany claimed the bronze medal as goals from Benjamin Christ (2), Florian Becker and substitute Robin Bayer gave them a 4-0 victory over France.

In yesterday’s other soccer games, Iran grabbed fifth place after a 7-2 victory over Argentina in a game in which all the goals were scored in the second half.

Ireland finished seventh by beating the US 3-0 and former champions Great Britain finished ninth after defeating Spain 3-0.

Denmark took 11th place with a 3-2 win over Japan, while South Korea finished 13th after defeating South Africa by the same score.

This story has been viewed 4873 times.

Comments will be moderated. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned.

TOP top