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Parlow, Milbrett lead 4-0 rout of Norway on hot, humid day.

BLAINE, Minn. (Sunday, July 21, 2002) -- Cindy Parlow scored twice while fellow striker Tiffeny Milbrett added a goal and an assist, all in the first 30 minutes, as the United States women rolled to a 4-0 decision over Norway in the stifling heat and humidity at the National Sports Center this afternoon.

The U.S. snapped a four-game losing streak, starting with a 3-2 overtime loss in the 2000 Summer Olympics gold medal match, to its arch-rival though Norway still holds an 18-14-2 edge in the series.

Temperatures above 90 degrees and humidity around 70 percent slowed the tempo of the match, but did not stop the Americans from dominating, posting a 20-5 advantage in shots and controlling possession throughout.

"We had two days of training time and we went with a totally new system," said U.S. coach April Heinrichs. "We're real proud of the players and they played smart soccer. We tried to get all the players the greatest opportunity for playing time and you saw a lot of players did well today. You saw a lot of players that are competing for playing time with us."

In the 11th minute, Milbrett danced inside a defender from the right flank and sent a pretty chip with her left foot into the penalty area. Parlow skirted the Norwegian restraining line and snapped an uncontested header into the right corner from five yards out to make it 1-0.

Six minutes later, it was Milbrett who found net. Midfielder Aly Wagner sent a long pass over the Norwegian defense for Milbrett, who managed to get a step ahead of defender Ane Stangeland. Goalkeeper Astrid Johannessen rushed out and was first to the ball, but fanned on her attempt to boot the ball clear at the top of the penalty area, leaving the goal wide open for Milbrett and a simple touch from seven yards to increase the lead to 2-0.

This was Milbrett's 88th career goal, trying her with midfielder Kristine Lilly for third on the U.S. all-time list and fifth in the world.

"I always love coming back to the national team, especially when we have so much time in between international games during the (Women's United Soccer Association) season," Milbrett said. "I love pulling the United States jersey back on and it's always a really proud time and a proud moment to be able to try to do what you can do for the crowd."

The Americans made it 3-0 in the 30th minute when Milbrett received a ball on right flank and twisted Stangeland into the ground before lifting a pass into the middle for a cutting Parlow who flicked a shoulder-height header into the lower right corner. Parlow now has 48 international goals.

Norway's only decent chance of the half came in the 26th minute when forward Anita Rapp sent a header wide right. Midfielder Hege Riise tried to volley a long shot over LaKeysia Beene in the 36th minute, but the U.S. keeper easily dove to her right to snag it.

Left alone against the U.S. back line in Norway's 4-5-1 formation, forward Ingrid Saethre had a tough day, seeing very few touches against central backs Joy Fawcett and Brandi Chastain.

Striker Mia Hamm, who played the second half, notched her world-best 130th goal in the 90th minute. Wagner beat a right-side corner kick into the middle for reserve midfielder Angela Hucles to head on goal. The shot was cleared off the goal line, but Hamm was right there to roof the rebound from close range.

The U.S. played without Lilly, its all-time caps leader, who was not released by the WUSA's Boston Breakers this weekend. Norway was missing star striker Dagny Mellgren, who was also withheld by the Breakers, as well as midfielder Solveig Gulbrandsen and goalkeeper Bente Nordby.

Without Lilly, the 21-year-old Wagner started and played well, striking two dangerous shots on goal in the first half. Tiffany Roberts was called on to be the defensive midfielder, her first start for her national team since September 4, 1999, against Ireland. Roberts, a 1995 and 1999 Women's World Cup veteran, did not play for the U.S. since 1999.

The U.S. women do not regroup until September when preparations begin for the CONCACAF qualifying tournament for the 2003 Women's World Cup. The event will take place from October 27 to November 9 at four venues on the American West Coast.

United States 4, Norway 0

Lineups: United States - LaKeysia Beene (Briana Scurry 46), Kate Sobrero (Jenny Benson 61) Joy Fawcett, Brandi Chastain, Cat Reddick, Aly Wagner, Tiffany Roberts (Lorrie Fair 46), Julie Foudy (Angela Hucles 59), Cindy Parlow (Jena Kluegel 61), Tiffeny Milbrett (Mia Hamm 46), Abby Wambach (Shannon MacMillan 37). Norway - -Astrid Johannesen; 2-Brit Sandaune, 3-Ane Stangeland, Anne Tonnessen, Cecilie Berg-Hansen (Bente Kvitland 83), Hege Riise, Kristine Rand Edner (Monica Knudesen 46), Unni Lehn, Anita Rapp (Gunhild Folstad 79), Trine Ronning (Linda Ormen 70), Ingrid Fosse Saethre (Kristine Blystad Bjerke 57).

Scoring:
United States - Parlow (Milbrett) 11.
United States - Milbrett (Wagner) 17.
United States - Parlow (Milbrett) 30.
United States - Hamm (unassisted) 90.

Shots: United States 20, Norway 5. Saves: United States 2, Norway 9. Corner kicks: United States 6, Norway 3. Fouls: United States 8, Norway 11. Offside: United States 4, Norway 3.

Referee: Keri Seitz (United States). Assistant referees: Sharon Wheeler (United States), Greg Barkey (United States). Attendance: 8,357 at National Sports Center in Blaine, Minn. Weather: Humid, breezy, 93 degrees

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