Evanston, Illinois – Michael Antis had 4 shots on goal, scoring once, and assisted Steve Kinsick for another to lead team USA to a 3-0 victory over team International on Thursday. Antis was assisted by a gloriously long pass from Northwestern’s own Timothy Allen.
Sam Morton, the converted college football kicker, scored the other goal unassisted by blasting one past the flailing arms of international keeper Abdel Tefridj. Sam’s goal was the finishing blow to what some would call an embarrassing defeat of the international team. It was Sam’s endurance and team USA’s relentless pressure that eventually lifted them to victory. The rules for “the live-in week grudge match” were agreed upon by team captains Mark Buchmann and Abdel Tefridj with Sohel Kahn officiating. All in attendance felt the 11 on 11, 30 minute, co-ed match lived up to the hype.
The International squad showed signs of brilliance and were clearly the more eloquent team on the pitch. Long, accurate passes from Marco Fischella to Sri Chakravarthy evoked memories of Landon Donovan and Alexi Lawless. Arul Sugunakumar displayed amazing speed and control while weaving through the suddenly lead footed USA defense. Sanja Licina and John Duong showed strong legs and grit while remaining on the field for the majority of the match. Kara Carlisle, Natalia Pavchinskaya and Ana Vasquez proved to be scrappy on the defensive side of the ball, Kara even set aside her own personal safety and traditional soccer technique to block a pass with her face during a critical part of the game.
However, it was the stamina of the America born team that would help bring them the victory. Chris Chenoworth, Ben Weiss and Jim Kennedy applied a constant attack on the international keepers. While Jerome Bryant, Jane Dillon and Kristi Dahlke provided a nigh-impenetrable wall on defense. The few shots that got through the American defense were quickly swallowed up by the sure handed keeper Jonathan Schroder. After the match, I was able to capture a quote from funny man Timothy Allen “What the United States team lacked in skill, we made up for with heart…..and skill.”
Congratulations to team USA. You were the winner on the field, but we were all winners during cocktail hour!