Three Stanford Players to Compete with U-21 National Team
April 19, 2007
Stanford, Calif. - Three Stanford women's soccer players are set to compete with the U.S. U-21 Women's National Team at the 2007 Futbol Internacional Tournament in Alabama next week. Freshman Kelley O'Hara and redshirt junior Rachel Buehler will join Marisa Abegg with the team for the matches, and will return to train with the full Women's National Team after the tournament. The six-team event runs Apr. 22-28 and will be played at six venues throughout the state.
Buehler is currently in residency with the full U.S. Women's National Team, but will head to Alabama to compete with the U-21s for the week. The Del Mar, Calif. started for the USA in both the 2002 and 2004 FIFA U-19 Women's World Championships and competed for the US U-21 National Team last summer.
O'Hara competed for the U.S. at the U-20 Women's World Cup last summer and was among the 32 players selected to the full National Team training roster last month. O'Hara was scheduled to come into Residency Training Camp with the team in early April, but had to delay her first senior team call-up to allow more time for a foot injury heal. She was set to join the U.S. team at the start of the next training block on Apr. 21, but due to her call-up with the U-21s, will now come into U.S. camp on Apr. 30.
Abegg has been competing in U-21 camps since January, and will continue as one of seven defenders on the current roster.
With three players on the roster, Stanford is one of the most well-represented schools in the country. The University of Portland is the only program with more players on the roster than Stanford. Eight members of the 26-player team are from the Pac-10.
The six-team, nine-match tournament features the U.S. U-21s, China's U-21s and Trinidad & Tobago's full Women's National Team in Bracket A while the full Women's National Team of Argentina joins Canada's Olympic Development Team, and Mexico's U-21s in Bracket B. Canada, which is currently preparing for the XV Pan American Games Rio 2007 in July and the FIFA Women's World Cup China 2007 in September, will send a mixed team of national-team veterans and youth-team prospects to the tournament. The two group winners will play for the championship, the second place finishers will play for third and the third-place finishers in each group will meet for fifth place.
The U.S. team, lead by head coach Bill Irwin, will open play on April 22 against China's U-21s at the famed Legion Field in Birmingham. The USA will also play Trinidad and Tobago on April 24 at the Alabama A&M Football Stadium in Huntsville. The placement matches will be held on April 28 at Baker High School Stadium in Mobile. These will mark the first international matches of the year for the U.S. U-21s.