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SPORTS
May 6, 2001 | By Mike Jensen INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Her coach calls Doris Fitschen the best central defender in the world. But in the world of women's soccer, that distinction hasn't provided Fitschen with much of a living. Playing club soccer in her native Germany, Fitschen earned about $250 a week. If her team won, she said, an extra $50 usually made it into her paycheck. For the first time in an international career that has included two Women's World Cups and an Olympics, Fitschen is playing soccer for pay without the need for a second income.
SPORTS
May 7, 2001 | by Kevin Mulligan Daily News Sports Writer
No one among the near-sellout crowd of 11,092 seemed to mind that it took the Philadelphia Charge more than 66 minutes to join the carnival atmosphere at Villanova Stadium. Like the area debut of the Women's United Soccer Association, the Charge's offense proved worth the wait. The Charge dominated the game's final 25 minutes to rally for a 3-2 victory yesterday over the Bay Area CyberRays on a perfect day seemingly scripted by Charge management. With fireworks exploding overhead and her teammates basking in a rousing postgame ovation, Charge star Lorrie Fair grabbed a microphone, thanked the enthusiastic crowd and told everyone to keep coming back.
SPORTS
February 17, 2001 | By Marc Narducci, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The Phillies aren't the only local professional team that will be going through spring training. The Philadelphia Charge of the new eight-team Women's United Soccer Association (WUSA) will be heading to spring training for a month in San Diego beginning March 1. During that time, the Charge will scrimmage against four other WUSA teams, a team from Bejing, China, and a top women's club team from Southern California. Coach Mark Krikorian says he hopes to take 28 players to San Diego.
SPORTS
June 15, 2001 | By Rich Fisher INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
As one of the top goalkeepers in the history of the Archbishop Wood girls' soccer program, Emily Oleksiuk quickly learned the importance of good timing when it came to stopping shots. As she prepares to enter her senior year at Penn State, Oleksiuk realizes that timing in life is equally important. Hers could not be better. "Basically, I'm in the right place at the right time," said Oleksiuk, who is in Chula Vista, Calif., with the U.S. women's under-21 national team. "I grew up playing soccer because, basically, all kids grow up playing it. I never imagined there would be a women's professional league.
SPORTS
April 14, 2001 | By Mike Jensen INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Inside her townhouse in Blue Bell, Liu Ailing laughed as she grabbed the plastic ShopRite bag out of the refrigerator. The bag held some carrots, a head of spinach, a cucumber, a grapefruit. Food that Liu knew she could eat raw. "I bought a lot of food. I didn't know how to cook it," Liu had said of her first expedition to an American supermarket. "I never cooked before. I don't know how to cook. " She pulled some wrapped roast beef from the fridge. She knew she could make a sandwich.
SPORTS
April 15, 2001 | By Frank Fitzpatrick INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Until the late 1990s, the great soccer boom among American girls was a lot like Amelia Earhart's plane. Lots of people talked about it, but no one knew where to find it. Soccer officials insisted as many as 8 million girls played, but where was evidence of this popularity? Had anyone seen a women's game on TV? Or mentioned in the sports pages? No mall kiosks hawked Michelle Akers' jerseys. And Mia was just an acronym for "missing in action," which is what big-time soccer was for American girls.
SPORTS
April 30, 2001 | For the Daily News
The Charge remained undefeated and unscored upon during the inaugural season of the Women's United Soccer Association, playing to a scoreless tie with the Atlanta Beat on Saturday night at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Goalkeeper Saskia Webber registered six saves in her first start to post the shutout for Philadelphia (1-0-1), which opened the year with a 2-0 win in San Diego. Atlanta (0-0-2) also played a scoreless tie against the New York Power. Neither Webber nor Beat goalkeeper Briana Scurry was seriously tested in the first half as the teams combined for just five shots on goal.
SPORTS
August 22, 2002 | By Don McKee INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Forward Marinette Pichon, who led the Charge with 14 goals and 29 points in her first year in the Women's United Soccer Association, yesterday was named the league's offensive player of the year. The honor was voted on by WUSA coaches, general managers, players, and selected media representatives. Pichon set Charge single-season records in goals and points and became the franchise's all-time leading scorer. She has twice been named player of the year in her native France.
SPORTS
August 23, 2002 | THE INQUIRER STAFF
Charge forward Marinette Pichon yesterday was named the most valuable player of the Women's United Soccer Association. Pichon, who is in France with her national team, had been named the league's offensive player of the year on Wednesday. New York's Tiffeny Milbrett won both awards last season. "This is a great honor, because the players in the WUSA are the best in the world," Pichon, 26, said. "It's very special to be compared to them. I owe this award to my teammates, but especially to my mom, who has always supported me throughout my life.
SPORTS
April 9, 2002 | By Todd Zolecki INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The theme for Year 2 is growth. That means more fans, more TV viewers, more sponsors, and more interest in the Women's United Soccer Association. It also means better competition on the field. The WUSA, which begins its second season Saturday with four games, knows it must take a step forward or risk being labeled a novelty act. Last year, the eight-team league drew an average of 8,104 fans per game, which was 25 percent higher than what it had expected. This year, it wants to see that number go even higher.
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SPORTS
July 24, 2010 | By Marc Narducci, Inquirer Staff Writer
Kristin Luckenbill is returning to the area Saturday for both a homecoming and an expected farewell. An alumnus of Conestoga High, Luckenbill will be playing what she expects to be her final game as New Jersey's Sky Blue FC visits the Independence in Saturday's 7 p.m. Women's Professional Soccer matchup at West Chester University. Pressed into the starting goalkeeping role after regular Karen Bardsley suffered a broken clavicle while participating in an all-star practice last month, Luckenbill says she expects Saturday to be her final game before continuing her education.
SPORTS
January 15, 2010 | By Kate Harman, Inquirer Staff Writer
When former Boston Breakers forward Amy Rodriguez was told in late September that she had been traded to the Philadelphia Independence, an expansion team in the Women's Professional Soccer league, she was shocked. "I hadn't heard anything from Philadelphia or Boston. I hadn't heard any interest from Philly, or had any conversation from people in Boston," said Rodriguez by phone from California. "I was like, 'I'm going where?' " Now, with the WPS draft being held today at the Convention Center (10 a.m. start)
SPORTS
May 28, 2008 | By KERITH GABRIEL, gabrielk@phillynews.com
Philadelphia soccer enthusiasts eagerly awaiting the arrival of the new Major League Soccer franchise in Chester may receive a bonus. Plans are in motion to bring a women's team to the area. Women's Professional Soccer, a league slated to begin play in the spring of 2009, announced yesterday its plans to tack on Philadelphia as an expansion franchise for 2010. "Since signing on the dotted line with our initial seven investors, we've had our sights set on adding an eighth team to the league," said WPS commissioner Tonya Antonucci.
SPORTS
January 19, 2006 | By Marc Narducci INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Women's soccer, riding the crest of the World Cup victory by the United States in 1999, introduced a professional league in this country less than two years later amid high hopes, but as it turned out even higher debt. The Women's United Soccer Association was formed in 2001 with much optimism that quickly turned into a glob of red ink, with losses during the three years estimated in the $90 million range. The league suspended operations in September 2003, and since then, various factions have looked into the feasibility of reviving women's professional soccer in the United States.
SPORTS
May 14, 2005 | By Shannon Ryan INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Just a few years ago, Aimee Bresani was a ball girl for the Philadelphia Charge. She pictured herself playing in the Women's United Soccer Association in a few more years. But like many young Philadelphia-area soccer fans, Bresani was left with a void to fill when the WUSA collapsed and the Charge ceased to exist after the 2003 season. Bresani, who played at Bishop Eustace High in South Jersey, is now part of team representing women's soccer in the area. The Philadelphia Pirates embark on their inaugural season in the Women's Premier Soccer League tonight on the road against the New England Mutiny, the Eastern Division champions.
SPORTS
February 24, 2004 | By Marc Narducci INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
In the previous three years, players in the Women's United Soccer Association would have been starting voluntary workouts about now. They would have been training hard, training together, and beginning the team-building process for the long season ahead. Not so this year. Less than a month after the 2003 season ended in August, the eight-team league, the first of its kind for female professional soccer players in the United States, folded. And although there has been talk of an abbreviated, one-month return in June - with the hope of a full schedule in 2005 - the future for professional women's soccer in the country remains hazy.
SPORTS
February 12, 2004 | Daily News Staff Report
Some teams have a player/coach. The women's U.S. national soccer team has a player/reporter. Heather Mitts, a defender for three seasons with the Charge of the Women's United Soccer Association, will play for the national team that will attempt to qualify for the Athens Olympic Games. She will also give on-site reports of the team's progress for NBC-10. Mitts, who has recovered from a broken right tibia suffered last June, was one of 20 players selected to the team on Tuesday.
SPORTS
September 27, 2003 | By Mike Jensen INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Don Garber, the commissioner of Major League Soccer, was at Lincoln Financial Field on Thursday night for the Women's World Cup doubleheader there. He was impressed with the turnout and the atmosphere, even though local organizers had hoped for more than the 31,553 who showed up. "A school night, in the fall," Garber said yesterday. "This is a good soccer market. " Garber would like to include it in his league. He has said that for years. But the stadium deal signed last month by the Eagles and Temple complicates things.
SPORTS
September 23, 2003 | By Mike Jensen INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Briana Scurry choked back tears as she rode to Washington's RFK Stadium on Sunday. The Women's World Cup opener was going to be her 120th game in goal for her country. But it was one that Scurry almost never got to play in. "You get on the bus a lot," the American goalkeeper said. "It's usually the same old ride. But this was definitely different. It was a very intense day. " Scurry was in the U.S. goal in 1999, for the last Women's World Cup. She is back for this one. She was the best then.
NEWS
September 20, 2003
What a great time it is for women's pro sports in America, womens' soccer in particular. Mia Hamm, one of the greatest soccer players of all time - male or female - is the cover story in the latest Sports Illustrated. Today, the first game of the Women's World Cup - the contest Hamm and her teammates triumphed at in 1991 and 1999 - takes place at Lincoln Financial Field. It used to be women's professional teams had cutesy names like the Milwaukee Chicks (one of the teams in the old All-American Girls Professional Baseball League)
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