The U.S. boys under-17 soccer team would have been satisfied with a tie against powerful Uruguay yesterday in its first-round finale at the world championships in Auckland, New Zealand. But with time running out in a scoreless match, Olney's Oguchi Onyewu scored a dramatic goal in the 90th minute as the Americans won, 1-0, to win their round-robin group and advance to the quarterfinals.

The Group A champion United States (2-0-1) will play Group B runner-up Mexico (2-1) Saturday afternoon (Friday night here) for a chance to advance to the semifinals for the first time in eight world appearances. Mexico upset Spain, 1-0, to earn the second berth in its group behind Ghana (2-0-1).

Onyewu, a 6-foot-2 right-side defender who played two seasons at Sherwood High School before entering the U.S. full-time training camp in Florida last January, headed in DaMarcus Beasley's corner kick for the only goal.

Onyewu was one of four Washington area players to contribute to the victory: Central defender Alexander Yi (McDonogh High) and playmaking midfielder Kyle Beckerman (Arundel) also played the entire game. Forward Abe Thompson (W.T. Woodson), who is interested in playing at the University of Maryland but also is being pursued by Swiss club Grasshoppers, entered in the second half.

Yi was issued his second yellow card of the tournament in the second half and is suspended for the quarterfinal match.


Seven-Player Trade

The St. Louis Cardinals acquired right-hander Darryl Kile in a seven-player deal with the Colorado Rockies. The Cardinals also got reliever Dave Veres, who had 31 saves last year, and pitching prospect Luther Hackman. The Cardinals gave up right-handers Jose Jimenez, Manny Aybar and Rick Croushore, plus minor league infield prospect Brent Butler. Jimenez, 26, had a no-hitter and two-hitter against Arizona's Randy Johnson this year but was 5-14 with a 5.89 earned run average. . . .

Minnesota Twins catcher Terry Steinbach announced his retirement after 13 seasons. Steinbach finishes his career with a .271 batting average and 162 home runs, including eight grand slams. He won a World Series title with the Oakland Athletics in 1989. . . .

New York Yankees Hall of Famer Yogi Berra, 74, underwent successful right knee replacement surgery, his spokesman said.

Horse Racing

Track Owner Wants Out

Colonial Downs owner Jeffrey Jacobs has decided to sell the struggling parimutuel horse track in New Kent County and will ask the track's directors to agree to a sale. The directors' decision will be disclosed at today's meeting of the Virginia Racing Commission. Jacobs would not name a potential sale price but said an auction would be held to allow potential buyers to make bids. Colonial Downs has been hampered by its failure to get an off-track betting center opened in the lucrative Northern Virginia market. This month, the town council of Dumfries rejected the company's proposal to build a steeplechase track that would include a year-round OTB center.


Karolyi Put in Charge

Bela Karolyi, the bearish-looking coach who helped Nadia Comaneci, Mary Lou Retton and Kerri Strug win gold medals, is taking charge of the U.S. women's gymnastics program less than a year before the Olympics. Karolyi, who retired after the 1996 Olympics, will be the women's national team coordinator, but he will not coach at the Sydney Olympics, USA Gymnastics said. He will set the team's training programs and oversee its Olympic preparations.


Johnson Defends Title

Washington junior bantamweight Mark Johnson (38-1) will make his third International Boxing Federation title defense Friday at D.C. Armory against a familiar foe, Mexico's Raul Juarez (28-5). Johnson dominated Juarez in their first fight more than three years ago--knocking him down in the third round, then knocking him out in the eighth--and has similar plans for the rematch. "I have no intention in leaving this one in the hands of the people using ink pens," Johnson said yesterday at a news conference. . . .

Undefeated cruiserweight Julian Letterlough (9-0), from Reading, Pa., will meet New Carrollton's Darryl Hollowell (13-6) in the main event of a six-bout card Thursday at Michael's 8th Avenue in Glen Burnie. Other area fighters on the card include Landover lightweight Jermaine Fields (18-0) and Falls Church middleweight Jimmy Lange (8-0-1). First fight is 8 p.m.


Removal Sought

U.S. drug chief Barry McCaffrey will call for the removal of Dick Pound as chairman of the International Olympic Committee's drug agency when he meets with IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch.

McCaffrey, the White House's chief drug adviser, made the comment today in Sydney as 26 nations signed an agreement to play a leading role in the new World Anti-Doping Agency during a drugs in sport summit.

"He's smart, he's a potential future president of the IOC, but he's also the marketeer," McCaffrey said. "He negotiates $1.08 billion in television rates out of U.S. television alone. You shouldn't have your marketeer being the independent drug testing person."


Results yesterday in the second round-robin of the Louis Vuitton Cup challenger series for the America's Cup in Auckland's Hauraki Gulf:

Le Defi Francais def. Fast 2000 by 1 minute 2 seconds.

Stars and Stripes def. Spanish Challenge by :50.

America True def. Young Australia by 2:10.

AmericaOne def. Abracadabra by 2:52.

Prada def. Young America by 1:14.

Bye: Nippon.

Points Standings

Prada 38

America True 26

Stars and Stripes 24.5

Young America 24

AmericaOne 24

Nippon 17.5

Spanish Challenge 13

Abracadabra 12

Le Defi Francais 10

Fast 2000 8

Young Australia 5