I mean, there would have been a blog post about something, related to that, but I can’t. So here is my thought process and an illustration of how I get derailed. Surprisingly, prompted by the Fleetwood Area High School Girls Soccer team rather than recent buzz about Nigeria. (With the central issue being the nickname the team has adopted for itself. Start at the highlighter bubble.)
Posted in Uncategorized.
– March 8, 2013
Discussed: USWNT talk. Scotland Games, Algarve Cup and YNT talk. Again, we’re experimenting with the format and trying to focus on one topic per episode. Let us know what you think about the new format on our Facebook poll.
Shownotes are below!
– February 22, 2013
What?: We recorded two episodes on one day.
Discussed: Recorded December 20, 2012. The 2012 NCAA tournament. New USWNT coach Tom Sermanni and what he means (probably not much, ultimately.)
Shownotes are below!
– February 8, 2013
Apology: Sorry this one’s so late, folks. I (Joan) moved to Austin, TX after the new year and have been slacking on soccer-related duties.
Discussed: Recorded December 20, 2012. Now-outdated talk of the new women’s soccer league, NWSL. The logo stuff is still WAY relevant, though.
Shownotes are below!
– February 7, 2013
Following up on the fun in São Paulo, Mexico put its money behind the young up-and-coming players that didn’t still have a year or two of their NCAA schools paying for them to play. (Which by the way, the breakdown by NCAA school is here.) And that’s a pretty good, calculated investment for Mexico, with the next World Cup being hosted in CONCACAF.
D Alina Lisi Garciamendez Rowold – Apr. 16, 1991
M Veronica Raquel Perez Murillo – May 18, 1988
M Teresa Noyola Bayardo – April 15, 1990
F Maribel Dominguez Castelan – Nov. 18, 1978
F Monica Ocampo Medina – Jan. 4, 1987
GK Aurora Cecilia Santiago Cisneros – Oct. 19, 1994
M Lydia Nayeli Rangel Hernandez – Feb. 28, 1992
F Renae Nicole Cuellar Cuellar – June 24, 1990
M Teresa Guadalupe Worbis Aguilar – Dec. 12, 1983
F Anisa Raquel Guajardo Braff – March 10, 1991
M Dinora Lizeth Garza Rodriguez – Jan. 24, 1988
D Jennifer Marie Ruiz Brown – Aug. 9, 1983
D Luz del Rosario Saucedo Soto – Dec. 14, 1983
D Rubi Marlene Sandoval Nungaray – Jan. 18, 1984
GK Pamela Tajonar Alonso – Dec. 2, 1984
D Marylin Viridiana Diaz Ramirez -Nov. 18, 1991
That’s 6 players born before ’85 (and you can almost ignore that as being “old” for a GK, since they age differently), 3 born between ’85-’90, and 7 born between ’90-’95. Out of 16 listed players, almost half of them were born in the 90s.
Bring it on, 2015.
– January 10, 2013
A/N: This is a Ruth+Chris production, Take 2.
Women’s soccer got its first youth World Cup in 2002: an Under-19 tournament held in Canada (and, technically, called a “World Championship” then). This tournament continued every two years until 2006, when it became an Under-20 tournament; raising the age limit just that little bit made room for another, even younger age group: the U-17s, who competed in their first World Cup in 2008, in New Zealand.
The USA has always competed well at the U-19/U-20 level: they won the first WC in 2002, placed third and fourth in 2004 and 2006, then won it again in 2008 and most recently in 2012. In 2010, the US U-20s lost in the quarterfinals, the worst showing in their history.
The Under-17s have had three World Cups to date: 2008, 2010, and 2012. In that time, unlike their older sister teams, the U-20s and the senior national team, the US U-17s have not won the Cup even once. Their first attempt in 2008 was their best showing: they lost to North Korea in the final. In 2012, the United States failed to even advance to the quarterfinals… by placing third in their group on goal-differential, behind the two eventual finalists, having given up only a single goal.
But that isn’t even the worst showing for the U-17s. In 2010, the US U-17s failed to even qualify for the World Cup. Also without giving a single goal in the qualifying tournament.
What is it about that age group? And what kind of impact would that “worst ever” showing have on the soccer careers of those who lived through it?
With the U-17s group-stage exit from the World Cup in Azerbaijan coming hot on the heels of the U-20s championship run through their age group’s World Cup in Japan, we got to thinking. It’s about time we properly caught up with the 2010 U-17s, a unique group that unfortunately didn’t have the chance to shine on the international stage. Despite eligibility, only a couple were included in the qualifiers and World Cup in the recent U-20 cycle. Some of the now-sophomores have had successful starts to their college careers. The youngest ones are now two months into their freshmen years or, in Lindsey Horan’s case, professional career. [A/N: Obviously we started this months ago... freshman and sophomore seasons are now on the books.]
Although about half of these names stay on our radar year ‘round, some we hear about only in passing or not at all anymore. So here we’ll take a look around the nation (and briefly overseas) at one of the best U.S. squads to date. (In the next joint post, we’ll take a look at what our options look like for the next U-20/U-17 cycle, based on 2010/2012.)
– January 5, 2013
For Christmas, my family bought DC Spirit season tickets for me. I very specifically asked for this, before the DC team was the “Spirit,” before they even really had season tickets on sale. I wasn’t sure I actually would get this gift, and if it hadn’t been a gift, I likely would not have been able to buy the package myself (because, yo, still lacking employment), so it’s a big deal to me that they put this money down in my name.
Here is what we currently know about DC:
- Nickname: Spirit
- Colors: blue, white, red
- Stadium: Maryland Soccerplex
- Head Coach: Mike Jorden
- Assistant Coaches: Cindi Harkes (former UVA player), Mark Parsons, Lloyd Yaxely
- Continuing W-League presence…
- …and youth academy
- Ali Krieger left Germany because she really wants to play here
- (My guess is that Wambach won’t be back, and I can really get behind that!)
I’ve never been a STH before for any team in any sport. I am rather pleased that a DC soccer team has the honor of being first, regardless of how I rag on them. Possibly even regardless of how they eventually build their team. This wouldn’t be the first time that I give my (at this point, nominal) money to a team I don’t like in order to be at soccer games, watching the sport I love, sometimes to watch visiting teams that I love. But this would be the first time that a team would have that money even if I can’t get down to the stadium to put my butt in the seat.
I live about 100 miles from the nearest NWSL team – which, for me, is Sky Blue FC. I’ve been to SBFC games, and I’ve been to Rutgers games during the NCAA season. I like the stadium, free parking, generosity of strangers, and watching my visiting squads beat Jersey teams on their own turf. I dislike the drive, the traffic, the turn-arounds, the gas stations, the general Jersey-ness of it all. I like free wifi and free, archived streams of games, but I dislike Tar Heels and organizations that are really obviously uncommunicative and secretive. I also dislike the cheesy color combo and lousy logo that SBFC sport. Great if you’re into that, but I’m not. They still get my money… when I’m there, which has been at least a few times each year since WPS launched, and even after it folded.
The Maryland Soccerplex is about 155 miles from me. The first time I went to a game there was in the summer of 2008, when the Washington Freedom W-League team was playing against some random team from Long Island or New Jersey. Joan and I had a lot of fun, anyway. That was a very good weekend. The Soccerplex has since formed the core of my live soccer experience.
Even though the Washington Freedom WPS team wasn’t a favorite for either of us, we still went to the Plex for games on occasion. Friends of ours are/were STHs, and their drive was farther than ours from Silver Spring, I think. I’ve also made the trip to the Plex to watch college teams face off, not to mention Headers for Hope.
When that whole magicJack mess happened in the final year of WPS, I took it kind of personally, as a women’s soccer fan. That was shady business even before the details came out, and it killed a long-standing tradition both for myself and American soccer as a whole. I think it also had a negative impact on the landscape of the US game, but let’s gloss over that for now.
Having a team in MD/DC is a bigger deal for me than having one in Philly. (Let’s face it, that’s the only place PA would have a women’s pro team. Pathetic.) So while I acknowledge that there are a lot of flaws in NWSL and perhaps a lot of things any cynic could complain about already with DC (which we touch on in our upcoming podcast), I already consider this my “home” team. And I’m actually kind of proud of that.
Women’s pro soccer is coming back to DC despite all of the bullshit that went down in those last two years of WPS. DC United, which filled that W-League void, is part of this return. Supporting this organization is kind of… my only way of flipping off Borislow. I’ll take it! I’ll also take 6-hour round trips to Maryland to watch games. Maybe not every game, because that’s a huge cost and a lot of travel, but I’ll do what I can to make sure my tickets get used in the best way possible. Even if I get a job that takes me away from the area or takes my time away from soccer, even if it puts me in range of another team, I’m completely satisfied with being a STH with DC. For me, that’s saying a lot.
So, even if Joan and I continue being our pessimistic and critical selves, likely even in the direction of the one team we have mutual ties to, just know – fellow fans and and DC Spirit staff/players – that I am very happy to have women’s soccer “back” in DC, representing at the highest level. I even put my money where my mouth is, when I can.
– December 26, 2012
1 Aurora Cecilia Santiago Cisneros: 19-Oct-94
2 Pamela Tajonar Alonso: 02-Dic-84
3 Alina Lisi Garciamendez Rowold: 16-Abr-91
4 Rubí Marlene Sandoval Nungaray: 18-Ene-84
5 Jennifer Marie Ruiz Brown: 09-Ago-83
6 Vaitiare Kenti Robles Salas: 15-Feb-91
7 Arianna Jeanette Romero Téllez: 29-Jul-92
8 Bianca Sierra Garcia: 25-Jun-92
9 Marcela Valera Ceballos: 12-Abr-87
10 Paulina Lizeth Solís Echeverría: 13-Mar-96
11 Karla Paola Nieto Castillo: 09-Ene-95
12 Teresa Guadalupe Worbis Aguilar: 12-Dic-83
13 Dinora Lizeth Garza Rodriguez: 24-Ene-88
14 Verónica Raquel Perez Murillo: 18-May-88
15 Lydia Nayeli Rangel Hernandez: 28-Feb-92
16 Teresa Noyola Bayardo: 15-Abr-90
17 Anisa Raquel Guajardo Braff: 10-Mar-91
18 Renae Nicole Cuellar Cuellar: 24-Jun-90
19 Mónica Ocampo Medina: 4-Ene-87
20 Maribel Domínguez Castelán: 18-Nov-78
21 Sofía Chritine Huerta Jensen: 14-Dic-92
12 players (a.k.a half the damn roster) was born in the ’90s. For most of these young women, this won’t be their first showing with the senior side. This is a young team, but not inexperienced. (An additional four are younger than I am, so… yeah.) A handful of these kids are among the NCAA ranks in the US, and Garciamendez, obviously, still has one or two games left to play. I’m guessing Huerta has a pretty good chance of getting capped, given her performances with Mexico and Santa Clara this year.
Mexico is scheduled to play Denmark on December 5th, Brazil on the 12th, and Portugal on the 16th, with a final on the 19th.
Posted in MWNT.
– November 28, 2012
In the two months since our last update, things have been fairly busy for us here at Cross Conference. Or, rather, away from Cross Conference. Joan has been traveling, having puppies, and Doing Work! I have been Doing Work, looking for work, and worrying over lots of little things, including the fact that I never posted the Ruth+Chris follow-up to the U-17 World Cup campaign. In the midst of all of that, Joan and I did manage to go to our first regular season NCAA game together, so that is a highlight that we will share in our next podcast.
Meanwhile, I have done a little bit of writing this college season, which I think CC readers/listeners will appreciate. It combines some of our favorite Cross-Conference topics: Broncos, players doing cool things, cool things that fly under the radar, and rainbows. And by rainbows, I mean The Gays. (And by The Gays, I mean the LGBTQ community and its allies.)
The article, published on the Our Game Magazine website last Friday, is entitled “Bronco Pride, Santa Clara Allies.” It was incredibly nerve wracking to write, and really not so easy to edit. I had two great interviews to build from with Meleana Shim and Margueritte Aozasa that I wish could have been part of a podcast – so much from the interviews didn’t make it into the article (and might not make it into the follow-up).
Since the follow-up hasn’t been finalized, I don’t want to get too much into the meta of the writing process just yet, but that is a topic I want to come back to on CC. In the meantime, check out the article and check out my Broncos! (Who meet Stanford next in the second round of the NCAAs, oh my heart.) And hey, let’s talk about how awesome it is when college players show some agency and do great things, instead of becoming an ESPN highlight reel for lack of sportsmanship.
– November 12, 2012
Important: Joan will be in Portland for the UND-Pilots game. Please say hello to her!
Discussed: No intro this week as Joan lost her voice due to a summer cold. Joan relays the most bizarre thing that has ever happened. Then we talk women’s soccer! U20 WWC, NCAA and we’ll be seeing a game together!
Shownotes are below!
– September 2, 2012