February 18, 2011
U-17s advance 1-0 over Panama
MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica – Andrew Oliver scored the game’s only goal as the U.S. defeated Panama 1-0 to capture Group B of the 2011 CONCACAF U-17 Championship. Oliver’s second strike of the tournament gave the United States six points from two matches, the team having collected a 3-1 victory against Cuba in their opening match.
Oliver won the aerial battle off a free kick delivered by Alejandro Guido, heading home in the 49th minute. Kellyn Acosta had been fouled harshly near the touchline, setting up the opportunity. Oliver now has two goals and an assist through two matches, one of three players in the competition to record multiple goals.
With the win, the U.S. will face El Salvador on Feb. 22 at Catherine Hall Stadium in Montego Bay in the quarterfinals. The winner of that match qualifies for the 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Mexico.
Panama needed to lose by fewer than two goals to secure a place in the quarterfinals and, down by one goal late in the game, Panama was content to let the U.S. hold onto possession. By virtue of their scoreless draw with Cuba and a 1-0 loss to the U.S., Panama held firm to second place in Group B. They will play Costa Rica on Tuesday with a FIFA U-17 World Cup berth on the line.