Monday, July 2, 2001
By Al Cohen
Philadelphia Charge Correspondent
The Charge make their only trip of the season to Fetzer Field in Chapel Hill, N.C. on Saturday, July 7 to battle the Carolina Courage. Philadelphia won the first match-up between the teams, as Kelly Smith, Mandy Clemens and Laurie Schwoy each scored in a 3-0 Charge victory on June 10. Goalkeeper Saskia Webber made five saves to record her third shutout of the year. The Charge and Courage will square off for the third and final time on Monday, Aug. 6 at 7:05 p.m. in Philadelphia.
European Championship Update
Defending champion and host Germany, led by Charge defender Doris Fitschen, swept through group play of the 2001 UEFA European Women's Championship last week by an 11-1 margin. They opened the tournament with a 3-1 victory over Sweden on June 23, cruised to a 5-0 triumph over Russia on June 27 and downed England, 3-0, on Saturday. England, with Charge forward Kelly Smith, was not as fortunate after recording an 0-2-1 record. The Brits started out with a 1-1 tie vs. Russia on June 24, but were blanked 4-0 by Sweden on June 27 before Saturday's setback vs. Germany. Smith, who has missed the last
three Charge games along with Fitschen, will now be available for this Saturday's match at Carolina. Germany and Sweden advanced to this Wednesday's semifinals from Group A, while Norway and Denmark moved on from Group B. The European Women's Championship Final is this Saturday, July 7.
Fair Re-Joins U.S. National Team
Midfielder Lorrie Fair was among 18 players selected by U.S. Women's National Team head coach April Heinrichs on June 14 to participate in the Independence Day Series vs. Canada. The two-game match-up kicked off Saturday night in Toronto, Ontario with a 2-2 tie. Fair started and played the first half before being replaced by the Atlanta Beat's Nikki Serlenga. The series concludes in Blaine, Minn., on Tuesday, July 3. Although she's just 22 years old, Fair already ranks 15th on the U.S. National Team's all-time games played list with 87. She has started 54 matches and recorded seven goals and four assists since making her debut in February 1996. Fair will re-join the Charge on Saturday in Carolina.
Athlete of the Week
The Charge and WIOQ FM (Q102) are recognizing local youth soccer athletes for their dedication, hard work and skills. Just log on to www.philadelphiacharge.com (Fan Zone section) or www.q102.com (contests section) and, in 50 words or less, tell us who you would like to nominate for Athlete of the Week and why. The Charge and Q102 will select one athlete per week until Aug. 8. Each winner will receive four tickets to Philadelphia's Aug. 9 match vs. San Diego, an invitation to a meet & greet with Charge players before the game and a certificate of recognition.
Goalkeeper Melissa Moore is suspended for this Saturday's game in Carolina after receiving a red card in Sunday's 1-1 tie vs. Atlanta. Moore, who was making her third start of the year and first at home, was ejected during the 82nd minute of Sunday's match after tripping up Emily Burt just outside the Charge penalty box. Ironically, Carolina goalkeeper Kristin Luckenbill (Paoli, Pa.) will also be suspended on Saturday after receiving a red card for a handball outside the penalty box in the 37th minute of Saturday's 2-0 loss in Washington.
July 13 Game Info
Charge mascot Electra will be celebrating her birthday at Philadelphia's next home match on Friday, July 13 at 7:05 p.m. vs. Julie Foudy and the San Diego Spirit. Several area mascots will be on hand to present Electra a special birthday card before the game and entertain throughout the contest. Acuvue is the game sponsor and will be distributing cheer sticks to the first 5,000 people in attendance. Fans can also bring their decoder game pieces they receive at the gate to the Acuvue booth in the Fan Zone to see if they win autographed prizes or a trip to the WUSA Championship Game. July 13 will be the third Youth Soccer Night, as area youth teams receive $5 discounts for $20 and $15 seats.
Back to School
Midfielders Lorrie Fair, Rakel Karvelsson, Laurie Schwoy and Rebekah McDowell and defender Kalli Kamholz will be playing at their old college field this Saturday. All five played at the University of North Carolina between 1995-2000, helping the school win four national championships during that time. Former Tar Heel defender Vanessa Rubio is also a member of the Charge practice roster, but does not travel with the team.
Charge Among the League Leaders
The Charge currently rank second in the league in goals scored (18, 1.50 gpg) and are tied for fourth in goals allowed (16, 1.33 gpg). Philadelphia is also tied for the WUSA lead with three road wins and is tied for second with five overall wins. Midfielder Liu Ailing is third in points (13) and tied for second place in goals (6). Goalkeeper Saskia Webber is sixth in the league with a 1.43 goals-against average and is tied for sixth with 37 saves.
Offense Spread Around
Philadelphia's 18 goals have come from 10 different players. Chinese midfielder Liu Ailing leads the way with six goals, while Kelly Smith, Mandy Clemens and Laurie Schwoy all have two.
Alternate Alternate Captain
Defender Jennifer Tietjen assumed the role of team captain the last three matches while full-time captain Doris Fitschen was in Germany for the European Women's Championship and alternate captain Lorrie Fair sat out two games due to a strained right hamstring and missed Sunday's match while with the U.S. National Team. The first game she captained in New York was extra special for Tietjen since she grew up in nearby Huntington, N.Y., and had numerous family and friends in attendance at the Father's Day game.
The Charge reside in the top half of the WUSA standings despite the fact that seven of their first 12 matches have been on the road. Philadelphia is 3-2-2 away from home thus far and is tied with Washington for the most road games played.
Perfect in Penalty Kicks
The Charge are a perfect 3-for-3 in penalty kicks this season. Defender Doris Fitschen scored Philadelphia's first-ever goal with a penalty kick in San Diego on April 22, midfielder Laurie Schwoy converted an attempt on June 10 vs. Carolina, and midfielder Liu Ailing booted one in on June 17 at New York. Charge opponents are 0-for-1 in penalty kick tries thus far.
Through 12 games, defender Jennifer Tietjen is the only Charge player to play all 1,080 minutes. Defender Heather Mitts is close, playing 1,076 minutes. Defender Doris Fitschen had played all 810 minutes over the first nine matches before departing for the European Championship.
Charge on National TV
Philadelphia finished with a 1-1-1 record in games televised nationally by CNN-SI this season, as they won 3-2 in Boston on May 27, dropped a 2-1 decision at New York on June 17 and played to a 1-1 draw with Atlanta on Sunday.
Individual game tickets for Charge home games at the 11,800-seat Villanova Stadium are $20, $15 and $10. Tickets can be purchased at the First Union Center box office and all Ticketmaster locations, or by calling 215-467-GOAL or the Ticketmaster number in your area: 215-336-2000, 856-338-9000 or 302-984-2000. Fans can also find a ticket request form on the team's official web site at www.philadelphiacharge.com. Discounts are offered for groups of 15 or more and children 12 and under on the $20 and $15 seats. Season tickets, which are priced at $300, $150 and $100, are also still available.