Saturday kickaround


An ominous sky over Ludwig Field just before kickoff Friday night at University of Maryland. (Tony Quinn)

*In an ACC match of high drama, near misses and relentless rain, top-ranked and unbeaten University of Maryland ran its winning streak to 12 matches Friday night with a 1-0 overtime victory over No. 2 North Carolina in front of more than 7,000 at Ludwig Field. Details in my match report.

On the West Coast, 13,467 witnessed visiting Cal Poly defeat UC Santa Barbara, 2-1.

*D.C. United looks to extend its unbeaten streak to six tonight at RFK Stadium — and, oh by the way, clinch an MLS playoff berth for the first time in five years — as it welcomes the contending Columbus Crew. My match preview sets the scene. The Capital Weather Gang has the game-time forecast.

*The U.S. women’s national team continues its gold medal tour with its biggest challenge yet tonight, a friendly against Germany at Toyota Park outside of Chicago (7 p.m. ET, Fox Soccer). As of yesterday, more than 18,000 tickets had been sold — easily the biggest crowd for a U.S. game in Bridgeview. The men drew 11,452 for a World Cup qualifier there against Trinidad & Tobago in 2008; the women played in front of 9,508 in a qualifier against Italy two years ago. The USA and Germany will meet again Tuesday in Hartford (7:30, NBC Sports Network). Ticket sales have surpassed 16,500.

 *CONCACAF announced that a draw will determined the World Cup hexagonal schedule in the next 30 days. I’ve heard Nov. 7 as a possibility. The governing body had considered allowing the six teams (USA, Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, Panama and Jamaica) to work out the dates on their own, but that was unrealistic. The final round will begin Feb. 6. (How badly would the USSF like to have a home game against a warm-weather opponent on that day?) Each nation will then play two matches in March, three in June, two in September and two in October.

 

 

 

Steven Goff is The Post’s soccer writer. His beats include D.C. United, MLS and the international game, as well as local college basketball.

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Steven Goff · October 19, 2012

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