Hall of Fame: The two who are missing

The election to the National Soccer Hall of Fame of Brandi Chastain (in her first year of eligibility) and Shannon MacMillan (in the Veteran category) brings to 11 the number of former women's national team players who have been elected to the Hall of Fame. But several stars continue to be overlooked, notably Briana Scurry, named to U.S. Soccer's all-time Best XI in goal, and Tiffeny Milbrett, who scored 100 goals in 206 games.

U.S. Hall of Famers:
Michelle Akers
*Brandi Chastain
Joy Fawcett
Julie Foudy
Carin Jennings Gabarra
Mia Hamm
April Heinrichs
Shannon Higgins-Cirovski
Kristine Lilly
*Shannon MacMillan
Carla Overbeck
*2016 inductees

Of the 11 players who started on the 1991 U.S. Women's World Cup championship team in the final against Norway, all but goalkeeper Mary Harvey and defender Linda Hamilton have now been elected to the Hall of Fame with Chastain's selection. (The 1991 U.S. Women's World Cup players are all Medal of Honor winners.)

From the 1999 U.S. Women's World Cup championship team that beat China in the final at the Rose Bowl, Chastain makes seven starters who are in the Hall of Fame. Missing are Cindy Parlow, Kate Markgraf, Scurry and Milbrett.

Chastain became the symbol for women's soccer when she ripped off her jersey after scoring the winning goal in the shootout that decided the 1999 Women's World Cup final, but it would not have been possible if Scurry had not stopped Liu Ying's shot in the third round.

Scurry, who was in her third year on the Hall of Fame ballot, also started for the USA when it won Olympic gold medals in 1996 and 2004. She retired in 2010 and has battled post-concussive symptoms since then.

Everyone remembers the 1999 Women's World Cup final, but there was another USA-China final three years earlier. Milbrett, who played at the University of Portland with MacMillan, scored the winning goal in the inaugural Olympic gold-medal game to give the USA a 2-1 win. The match drew 76,489 fans in Athens, Georgia. The crowd was a then-world record for a women's match, but Olympic broadcaster NBC all but ignored the game.

No retired player played in more games and scored more goals than Milbrett and is not in the Hall of Fame. (Markgraf, a starter on the 1999 Women's World Cup championship team and 2004 and 2008 Olympic gold-medal teams, is the only other player with more than 200 caps -- 201 -- and not in the Hall of Fame.)

Any player appearing on at least 66.7 percent of the ballots submitted by voters earns election to the Hall of Fame. In 2015, Scurry appeared on 65.6 percent of the ballots, while Milbrett received 57.3 percent. In her final year on the ballot, MacMillan received 50 percent. (No information on the 2016 balloting was released.)

MacMillan got into the Hall of Fame in her first year on the Veteran ballot. It would be a shame if Scurry and Milbrett would have to wait until then to receive their Hall of Fame honors.

4 comments about "Hall of Fame: The two who are missing".
  1. Gus Keri, May 6, 2016 at 8:50 a.m.

    This article should have been written before voters make their choices. apparently they have a short memory.

  2. stewart hayes, May 6, 2016 at 12:04 p.m.

    Thanks for the Youtube links above. I enjoyed re-living this great game.

  3. John Soares, May 6, 2016 at 12:53 p.m.

    "Overlooked" is a huge understatement. 200+ games 100 goals and probably as many assists. Scurry was by far, and for many years the best goalie in the world. What more is needed?

  4. Wooden Ships replied, May 6, 2016 at 6:06 p.m.

    You summed it up John, can't add more.

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