Once again, the U.S. performance wasn't pretty. Santino Quaranta was red carded in the 19th minute for a nasty foul, forcing the Americans to play the rest of the game with 10 men. The winning goal came on an own goal in the 85th minute when Salvadoran defender Alexander Escobar knocked Bobby Convey's cross into his own goal.
Convey went off in the 90th minute after being injured by a Salvadoran player. U.S. coach Thomas Rongen followed Quaranta to the dressing room when he was ejected in the 87th minute.
Canada tied Haiti, 0-0, in the other game. Canada can join the United States, Panama and Mexico as the CONCACAF representatives at USA '03 with a tie or win against the United States Sunday or an El Salvador win or tie against Haiti.
USA-EL SALVADOR SUMMARY:
Nov. 15 in Charleston, S.C.
USA 1 El Salvador 0. Goal: own goal (Escobar) 85.
USA -- Cronin, Harvey, Marshall, Cochrane, Klaas, Mapp, Clark (Stone, 78), Convey (D.Johnson, 90), Barclay, E.Johnson, Quaranta.
El Salvador -- Hernandez, E.Carranza, Escobar, Castillo, Garcia, Bernal (Bonilla, 81), Alas, Leiva, R.Ochoa, C.Carranza, Villalta (J.Ochoa, 72).
Red cards: USA -- Quaranta 19, Rongen (coach) 87.
Referee: Armando Archundia (Mexico).