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U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM

July 4, 2012
STILL ALIVE
US Futsal team defeats Canada at CONCACAF tourney


GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala - The U.S. Futsal National Team defeated Canada 3-2 Tuesday with goals from Patrick Healey, Bryan Perez and Kraig Chiles at the 2012 CONCACAF Futsal Championship, snapping a 12-game losing streak and earning their first three points of the tournament.

It was a must-win match for the U.S., which faces defending champion and group leaders Guatemala in the third and final group match, at 10 p.m. ET on July 4, live on CONCACAF.com. A victory against Guatemala combined with a Panama victory against Canada would leave Group A with three teams tied at six points, in which case, the USA's fate would be determined by a tie-breaker.

Canada was also in a must-win situation, and took an early lead off Bruno Xavier’s free kick from the penalty spot in the seventh minute, after U.S. goalkeeper Daniel Waltman was called for a four-second violation. The US responded with a high-pressure attack, and equalized ten minutes later, when Healey put away the rebound after Chiles hit the post.

The stalemate was broken in the 30th minute, as Healey forced a turnover in the middle of the field and carried the ball up, passing it left on the ground to Perez as ‘keeper Roy Blance came out to cut him off. Perez slotted the ball into the middle of the open goal for his second career goal and second goal of the tournament.

Canada pulled one back less than 30 second later as Matthew Rios headed down a long pass right onto the path of Ian Bennett. Bennett, who plays under USA coach Keith Tozer at the Milwaukee Wave, brought down the perfectly weighted ball in stride and fired a blast past Waltman. The US put the game away in the 33rd, after Ptah Myers laid off Angel Rivillo’s corner kick for Chiles, who scored past the screened ‘keeper.

Canada pulled Blance for a fifth attacker late in the game, forcing Waltman to make four point-blank saves in the final two minutes to preserve the win.


   
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