September 20, 2008
Kathryn L. Knapp
ON THE MARK
Markgraf scores first goal in USA's 2-0 win
BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. – Kate Markgraf, on eof three U.S. National team players who will play with Chicago’s Women’s Professional Soccer team next year stole the show Saturday night. In her 193rd appearance and 10th year playing with the U.S. Women, Markgraf netted her first international goal and helped the women to a 2-0 win over Ireland in front of 5,390 at Toyota Park.
|USA defender Kate Markgraf tallied her first career goal in her 193rd match.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
“I’m so proud of her,” Lindsay Tarpley said. “She finished off a great penalty kick. She’s been such a great part of our team for so long, she definitely deserves it.”
Lori Chalupny gave the USA a 1-0 lead in the 19th minute. Tarpley found Chalupny in the box. Chalupny settled the ball and blasted it into the net for a 1-0 lead.
In the 31st minute Natasha Kai was taken down in the box for a penalty kick. Markgraf took the kick and sent a clean shot into the lower left corner for a 2-0 lead.
“I’ve played with this team for 10 years and I didn’t have a goal,” Markgraf said. “Today it just came. Now I know what it feels like to score.”
Despite 21 total shots and seven on goal, the Americans fell short of scoring in the second half. But the defense had things under control. Defenders scored both goals. The backline allowed just one corner kick and two shots in the match. Hope Solo and Nicole Barnhart split time in goal with 45 minutes apiece.
“I’m always happy to have our defenders score,” U.S. women’s head coach Pia Sundhage said. “It shows that anyone can score a goal on this team.”
The U.S. women held Ireland scoreless in its three matches. They won the first two matches of their Achieve Your Gold Tour with 2-0 and 1-0 wins in Philadelphia and New York respectively.
“We really came together as a team at the Olympics,” Tarpley said. “Now we have a chance to show our fans how we play. We win games as a team.”
After posting a 3-0 record in the first part of their tour, the women will resume play in November, traveling throughout the country for seven more matches.