January 21, 2015
USA edges T&T, moves closer to U-20 playoffs
MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica -- Bradford Jamieson scored in the 78th minute to lift the United States to a 1-0 Group A victory over Trinidad & Tobago and closer to the playoff round of the CONCACAF Under-20 Championships on Wednesday night.
The Americans, who needed a draw or win to stay alive at the Montego Bay Sports Complex, finished the group stage at 3-1-1 and seven points, second to Panama (5-0-0, 15). The Soca Warriors (1-1-3, 4 points) were eliminated.
The USA should meet an opponent to be determined on Saturday after Thursday’s Group B tripleheader. The winner of Saturday's match will clinch a spot in the FIFA Under-20 World Cup in New Zealand from May 30 to June 20.
"We kept working hard though some things didn't work out well for us in the beginning," Jamieson said.
Jamieson experienced disappointment in his efforts to break the deadlock.
In the 49th minute, Emerson Hyndman sent in a free kick from the right side. After T&T failed to clear the ball, Jamieson tried a point-blank attempt with goalkeeper Johan Welch out of the net. Neveal Hackshaw cleared the ball off the line to preserve the scoreless tie.
Jamieson finally solved the defense in the 78th minute. Junior Flores originated the play with a quick counter that started at T&T's penalty box. He passed to Paul Arriola, who crossed in the ball from the right side. Jamieson slotted it home into the lower left corner for his third goal of the tournament.
"It's a big sigh of relief," Jamieson said. "It's definitely something that we worked through. My goal reflected the work of the whole team."
Both teams had chances to score late in the match regulation and the final precious moments of stoppage time.
Only three minutes before Jamieson's decisive strike, T&T center back Leland Archer nearly scored during a scramble in the penalty area.
Hyndman, who has been better known for his playmaking and set pieces in this competition, almost gave the Americans a two-goal lead in the 85th minute as Welch made a great save.