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August 18th, 2006 3:29PM



The USA struggled to put away the Democratic Republic of Congo in the opening game of the Under-20 Women's World Championship in Russia.

Goals on either side of halftime from Stanford recruit Kelley O'Hara and USC star Amy Rodriguez, who converted a penalty, gave the Americans a 2-0 lead, but the Congolese made it close when Tresorine Nzuzi scored in the 70th minute for the Young Leopards. The game, which drew only 300 fans at Moscow's Torpedo Stadium, was Congo's first in a FIFA world championship since it appeared in the 1974 World Cup as Zaire.

In the other Group D opener, France crushed Argentina, 5-0. The other CONCACAF finalists split. Two late goals by Cynthia Uwak gave Nigeria a stunning 3-2 win over Canada, while Mexico beat Switzerland, 4-2. The Tri got two first-half goals from 14-year-old sensation Charlyn Corral.

For the USA-DR Congo summary:

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