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Wednesday, June 22, 2011
U.S. U-17s stunned by Uzbekistan

By Scott French

Uzbekistan's first World Cup finals victory, any level, came at the expense of the U.S. on Wednesday, a 2-1 decision in Torreon that left all four Group D teams with three points after two games in the FIFA U-17 World Cup in Mexico.

Bobir Davlatov's stunning 13th-minute goal sent the Uzbeks ahead, and Abbosbek Makhstaliev converted a penalty kick to break a 1-1 draw in the 54th. Alfred Koroma, with his second goal of the tournament, tallied just after halftime.

Three local players started for the U.S.: Palmdale's Esteban Rodriguez (Bell Gardens HS), North Hollywood's Mario Rodriguez (Poly HS in Sun Valley) and Paul Arriola, who is from the San Diego area but plays club ball for Alta Loma's Arsenal FC. Galaxy forward Jack McBean, from Newport Beach (Corona del Mar HS), and goalkeeper Wade Hamilton, from Murrieta (Murrieta Valley HS) were among the unused substitutes.

The U.S. and New Zealand, a 1-0 loser to the Czech Repubic, top the group on goal difference (plus-2) and goals scored (four apiece) heading into their meeting Saturday in Pachuca.