SAITAMA, Japan (Aug. 31, 2012) - The U.S. U-20 Women's National Team earned a hard-fought 2-1 overtime victory against a strong Korea DPR side when Chioma Ubogagu scored the game-winning goal in the 98th minute to lead the USA to its fifth semifinal appearance in a FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup. U.S. midfielder Vanessa DiBernardo contributed a goal in the second half.
Three UNC players started for the American side and played all 90 minutes — Bryane Heaberlin, Crystal Dunn and Kealia Ohai. Heaberlin made three saves in goal while Dunn assisted on Ubogagu's game-winning goal in the first overtime period.
The USA victory sets up a semifinal meeting against Nigeria - which defeated the USA on penalty kicks in the quarterfinals of the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup. The match will be broadcast live on ESPNU and ESPN3 on Tuesday, Sept. 4, with coverage starting at 2:50 a.m. ET. Fans can also follow the match on ussoccer.com's MatchTracker and on Twitter @ussoccer_ynt.
Entering Friday's semifinal match, forward Maya Hayes accounted for all four USA goals in the tournament, but the U.S. found some needed offense among the rest of its roster. Ubogagu closed out the match with the winning score against a Korea DPR roster that featured a total of 10 players from their 2012 London Olympics team.
U.S. defender Crystal Dunn set up Ubogagu's goal with the cross from the right as Ubogagu lost Korea DPR defender Pong Son Hwa with her run from the left side. With good space to line up her header, Ubogagu drove the ball in and North Korea goalkeeper O Chang Ran managed to get a right glove on the shot. The ball trickled over the goal line and gave the USA a 2-1 lead in the first 15-minute overtime period.
The U.S. spent the remainder of the overtime maintaining solid possession on the ball while the defense clamped down when North Korea pushed up into the offensive third. Korea DPR did not register a shot on goal during overtime.
In the buildup to DiBernardo's go-ahead tally in the 52nd minute, the U.S. whipped the ball in from the right side and Korea DPR's defense tried to clear. DiBernardo was there to possess in the middle of the field, and with a quick touch she lined up a shot from more than 25 yards out that whizzed past O Chang Ran and into the left corner of the net for a 1-0 lead.
Korea DPR found the equalizer in the 75th minute when Kim Un Hwa poked a pass to second-half sub Kim Su Gyong, who found space in the middle of the box and took a left-footed shot that hit the upper right corner past USA goalkeeper Bryane Heaberlin to tie the score at 1-1.
Heaberlin made three saves en route to the victory, and she set the tone early with a big diving save to her left against Jon Myong Hwa on a free kick in the 27th minute. O Chang Ran had a game-high seven saves for Korea DPR.
- U.S. Under-20 Women's National Team Match Report -
Match: United States U-20 Women's National Team vs. Korea DPR
Date: Aug. 31, 2012
Competition: 2012 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup; Quarterfinal
Venue: Komaba Stadium; Saitama, Japan
Kickoff: 6:30 a.m. ET (7:30 p.m. local)
Weather: 81 degrees, hot and humid
USA 0 1 1 0 2
PRK 0 1 0 0 1
USA - Vanessa DiBernardo (unassisted) 52nd minute
PRK - Kim Su Gyong (Kim Un Hwa) 75
USA - Chioma Ubagagu (Crystal Dunn) 98
USA: 1-Bryane Heaberlin; 4-Crystal Dunn, 8-Julie Johnston (capt.), 3-Cari Roccaro, 2-Mollie Pathman; 16-Sarah Killion, 10-Vanessa DiBernardo (15-Kassey Kallman, 108), 6-Morgan Brian; 7-Kealia Ohai, 20-Kelly Cobb (13-Samantha Mewis, 61), 5-Maya Hayes (9-Chioma Ubogagu, 71)
Subs not used: 11-Becca Wann, 12-Katie Stengel, 14-Mandy Laddish, 17-Taylor Schram, 18-Abby Smith, 19-Stephanie Amack, 21-Jami Kranich
Head Coach: Steve Swanson
PRK: 18-O Chang Ran; 2-Kim Nam Hui, 5-Yun Song Mi, 14-Pong Son Hwa, 15-Ri Nam Sil; 8-Jon Myong Hwa, 12-Kim Un Hyang, 13-O Hui Sun (capt.), 19-Yu Jong Im (20-Kim Su Gyong, 56); 10-Yun Hyon Hi, 11-Kim Un Hwa (17-Kwon Song Hwa, 78; 3-Ri Yong Mi, 105)
Subs not used: 1-Choe Kyong Im, 7-Kim Un Ju, 4-Kim Un Ha, 6-Ryu Un Jong, 9-Pak Kyong Mi, 16-Ri Hyang Hui, 21-Kim Chol Ok
Head Coach: Sin Ui Gun
Stats Summary: USA / PRK
Shots: 14 / 7
Shots on Goal: 9 / 4
Saves: 3 / 7
Corner Kicks: 9 / 7
Fouls: 14 / 12
Offside: 1 / 8
USA - Kealia Ohai 57th minute
USA - Cari Roccaro 80
PRK - Yun Song Mi 118
Referee: Silvia Spinelli (ITA)
Assistant Referee 1: Karine Solana Vives (FRA)
Assistant Referee 2: Manuela Nicolosi (FRA)
Fourth Official: Fusako Kajiyama (JPN)