Sun Devil Nieva, Mexican U-20 Side Win World Championships Opener
Aug. 18, 2006
TEMPE, Ariz. - Christine Nieva, a member the Arizona State University soccer team, and the Mexican Under-20 Women's National Team opened play at the 2006 FIFA Under-20 Women's World Championships Friday in Moscow, Russia, and won their Group C clash with Switzerland, 4-2.
Nieva, who will is entering her sophomore season with the Sun Devils, was in the starting line-up for the Mexicans and played the first 76 minutes of the match before being spelled by one her side's three substitutions. The victory also carried a historic significance as it marked the first time a Mexican women's national team at any level has won a match in a world championship event.
Although the Swiss opened the match with the early lead after netting a goal in the 12th minute, the Mexicans rebounded nicely as their attack-minded squad scored three times before halftime, including strikes in the 15th and 30th minutes before adding its third score in the second minute of stoppage time. Following the intermission, Switzerland cut into the lead with a goal in the 65th minute of play, but would get no closer as Mexico sealed the deal with its final goal in the second minute of stoppage time.
The victory gave Mexico three points and a place atop the Group C standings, tied with Korea, a 2-0 victor over defending champion Germany. The Top 2 teams at the end of group play advance to the knockout stages. Before the next stage, Mexico will face Germany on Monday (Aug. 21) before closing the group action with Korea on Thursday (Aug. 24).