The Year in American Soccer - 1987

Written by David Litterer (

MISL | AISA | SISL | WSA | LSSA | CSL | Men's National Team | Women's National Team | College Game | Other Action

The year 1987 went down in history as being the beginning of the rebirth of professional soccer in the United States. The MISL was coming off its strongest season, and both the AISA and WSA were showing marked improvement. Meanwhile, the USSF was making serious efforts to rebuild the National Team in preparation for its bid for the 1994 World Cup. This activity led to interest by new investors, and three new leagues took to the pitch. Francisco Marcos started the Southwest Indoor Soccer League, centered in the American Southwest, as a feeder system for the Major Indoor Soccer League. The Lone Star Soccer Alliance, an outdoor circuit based in Texas and Oklahoma also made its debut, as did the Canadian Soccer League, which was the first true nationwide professional league in Canada.

The trend here was regionalization. In addition to the above new leagues, the AISA operated mostly in the Midwest, the MISL along the east and west coasts, and the WSA in the western states. Add to this the third American Soccer League, which would take to the field in 1988, and the country was covered with a patchwork of leagues covering specific regions. Although these were basically Division 2 and semi-pro leagues, they were helping to rebuild the sport at a grassroots level, and eventually would create a foundation from which a new top level professional league could arise. This was not lost on the USSF which knew it would have to have a Division 1 league if it hoped to bring the World Cup to US soil. The elusive dream had always been to have a coherent league structure, and orderly relations between national, professional, amateur and college soccer organizations. But for now the existing system would become more complex and confused than ever, as the various leagues fought out their rivalries as they jockeyed for positions of dominance in the US Soccer community.

Major Indoor Soccer League

Once again, 12 teams took to the field for the MISL's ninth season. ESPN's TV schedule was expanded to 18 games. As in the previous season, the western Division race was a blowout, but this time it was the Tacoma Stars that took the prize, beating the vastly improved Kansas City Comets for the title. In the East, Cleveland again took top spot, beating out the Baltimore Blast by a game. Dallas, Minnesota and Chicago finished a comfortable distance behind. The New York experiment was a widespread failure. After winning only 3 of their 26 games, the team folded mid-season.

The end of the season saw Cleveland and Tacoma win their respective division titles, and advance to the semifinals despite rough quarterfinal series against Minnesota and Wichita. San Diego and Dallas upset their quarterfinal rivals, beating Kansas City and Baltimore respectively. The upsets continued in the semifinals, as the favored Cleveland Force fell to Dallas in four. Tacoma prevailed in the other series, but took the full seven games to fend off a tenacious San Diego. The championship series was one of the most tenacious series yet. Yet another comeback story, Tacoma fell behind early, losing to Dallas 4-10 and 4-7, before taking the next two 5-3 and 6-5. Game 5, held in Tacoma broke the MISL attendance record as 20,284 fans flocked to the Tacoma Dome to see the stars defeat Dallas 5-3. Game six was played before a packed house at Reunion Arena in Dallas, where 16,824 witnessed the longest game in MISL playoff history. It went eighty and a half minutes before the Sidekicks finally defeated Tacoma 5-4. In the final game, back at Tacoma, an indoor soccer record crowd of 21,728 packed the Tacoma Dome only to see Dallas win the league championship with a 4-3 overtime victory, 4-3, over the Stars, on June 20.

For the first time in recent history, Steve Zungul did not take the top scoring title, which went to Tatu of the Dallas Sidekicks. This year, the MISL sponsored a tour by Dynamo Moscow, who played six games against MISL opponents, with the MISL teams winning all six games, one going to overtime. The games were popular, ranging from 8,000 to almost 13,000, and inspiring a similar series two years later.

Two worrisome developments nagged the MISL. First was the continuing slide of the St. Louis Steamers, formerly a flagship franchise which had regularly led the league in attendance and led the way with innovative promotional events. The second was the continuing poor performance of the Los Angeles Lazers who again finished last in the West, despite being in one of the league's largest market areas. At this point, the three top metropolitan areas featured a folded team and two teams at the bottom of their divisions. The league faced other challenges as well. The AISA, buoyed by its first successes, expanded into new territories and began to raid the MISL for players leading to the start of a salary war. Feeling the pinch, the Minnesota Strikers received permission to suspend operations for 1987-88 to reorganize their finances through a "save the Strikers" campaign. This was successful and the team returned for the season after all.

 1986-87 MISL Final League Standings
Before the season, New York was reactivated and changed its name to Express.
  Eastern Division
Cleveland Force 52 34 18 252 218 .654 --
Baltimore Blast 52 33 19 239 201 .635 1
Dallas Sidekicks 52 28 24 209 197 .538 6
Minnesota Strikers 52 26 26 205 198 .500 8
Chicago Sting 52 23 29 263 265 .442 11
New York Express 26 3 23 97 159 .115 --
  Western Division
Tacoma Stars 52 35 17 249 211 .673 --
Kansas City Comets 52 28 24 271 253 .538 7
San Diego Sockers 52 27 25 214 200 .519 8
Wichita Wings 52 27 25 268 265 .519 8
St. Louis Steamers 52 19 33 195 224 .365 16
Los Angeles Lazers 52 16 36 183 254 .308 19
Div. Semi-finals: Cleveland def. Minnesota, 4-5(OT), 7-6, 6-5(OT),
 Dallas def. Baltimore, 2-3, 7-6, 2-3(OT), 4-3(OT),7-4
 San Diego defeated. Kansas City, 5-4(OT), 1-5, 7-9,
 5-2, 9-5
 Tacoma defeated Wichita, 9-7, 9-1, 3-10, 2-6, 4-2
Semifinals: Dallas defeated Cleveland, 3-5, 9-6, 5-2, 9-4
 Tacoma defeated San Diego, 5-6, 7-2, 3-2, 2-6, 5-6,
 4-3, 8-5
CHAMPIONSHIP: Dallas defeated Tacoma, 4-10, 4-7, 5-3, 6-5, 3-5,
 5-4(2 OT), 4-3(OT)
During the season, New York folded.
All-Star Game: Eastern Division defeated Western Division 6-5 in overtime.
(at Los Angeles. Att: 15,893. MVP: Kai Haaskivi)
Leading Scorers GP G A TP
Tatu, Dallas 51 73 38 111
Jai Goossens, Kansas City 45 51 44 95
Kai Haaskivi, Cleveland 49 34 55 89
Steve Zyngul, Tacoma 51 42 47 89
Preki, Tacoma 51 41 47 88
Chico Borja, Wichita 46 51 36 87
Batata, Chicago 52 37 48 85
Godfrey Ingram, Tacoma 51 52 29 81
Dale Mitchell, Kansas City 48 51 24 75
Branko Segota, San Diego 38 34 41 75
Carl Valentine, Cleveland 52 33 39 72
Gary Heale, Tacoma 52 46 24 70
Drago, Chicago/Baltimore 50 34 30 64
Damir Haramina, Kansas City 45 42 22 64
Karl-Heinz Granitza, Chicago 38 35 28 63
Pato Margetic, Kansas City 46 25 37 62
Richard Chinapoo, Baltimore 40 40 21 61
LEADING GOALKEEPERS (Min. 1250 minutes to qualify)
 GP Min. Sho Svs GA W-L GAA
Tino Lettieri, Minnesota 35 2058 839 392 116 15-19 3.38
Krys Soboeski, Dallas 43 2525 1010 464 145 24-19 3.45
Scott Manning, Baltimore 24 1314 554 280 78 14-9 3.47
Zoltan Toth, San Diego 33 1875 720 364 110 17-13 3.52
Jim Gorsek, San Diego 25 1265 489 259 82 10-12 3.89
Keith Van Eron, Baltimore 26 1390 688 330 91 15-6 3.93
Joe Pacaleo, Tacoma 31 1808 924 360 120 22-9 3.98
Slobo Ilijevski, St. Louis 46 2631 1150 627 176 16-28 4.01
Chris Vaccaro, Cleveland 29 1731 791 342 116 20-9 4.02
P. J. Johns, Cleveland 24 1406 690 331 95 14-8 4.05
David Brcic, Los Angeles 39 2304 1028 508 160 14-25 4.17
Alan Mayer, Kansas City 39 2307 1144 562 161 22-16 4.19
Most Valuable Player: Tatu, Dallas Sidekicks
Coach of the Year: David Clements, Kansas City
MISL Scoring Champion: Tatu, Dallas Sidekicks
MISL Pass Master (most Assists): Kai Haaskivi, Cleveland Force
Defender of the Year: Bruce Savage, Baltimore Blast
Goalkeeper of the Year: Tino Lettieri, Minnesota Strikers
Rookie of the Year: John Stollmayer, Cleveland Force
Newcomer of the Year: Steve Kinsey, Minnesota Strikers
Championship Series Player of the Year: Tatu, Dallas Sidekicks
All-MISL team:
G - Kyle Sobieski, Dallas Sidekicks
D - Bruce Savage, Baltimore Blast
D - Kevin Crow, San Diego Sockers
M - Kai Haaskivi, Cleveland Force
F - Tatu, Dallas Sidekicks
F - Steve Zungul, Tacoma Stars
International Tour of Dynamo Moscow, January 26, 1987 - February 8, 1987. 
The result of this tour for Moscow Dynamo was 0 wins and 6 losses.
1/26/87 Dynamo Moscow 3, Kansas City Comets 11 att: 12,893
1/27/87 Dynamo Moscow 6, Wichita Wings 7 att: 8,305
1/28/87 Dynamo Moscow 5, St. Louis Steamers 6 (OT) att: 6,466
2/3/87 Dynamo Moscow 7, Baltimore Blast 8 att: 9,558
2/5/87 Dynamo Moscow 4, Chicago Sting 10 att: 12,892
2/8/87 Dynamo Moscow 5, San Diego Sockers 7 att: 8,147

American Indoor Soccer Association

Buoyed by their continuing success, the AISA added four teams and split into two divisions. For the first time, they expanded out of the Midwest, with the Tampa Bay Rowdies. The league also sent a sizeable number of players to the US National Indoor team, which beat Italy, Holland, Portugal and Peru during three international tournaments in Hungary, Spain and Brazil. Dr. Joseph A. Machnak was named the league's new Commissioner. Also new this year was the league's first college draft. The first fruit of this endeavor was Franklin McIntosh, who became a major scoring power throughout the next decade. The league began to actively court MISL players with salary offers; this would eventually lead to a major salary war. This year's catch included Steve Wegerle, Arnie Mausser and Jim Gabarra.

Showing some of the parity one would expect in a new league, expansion teams saw some success this season, with Memphis finishing second in the Southern Division and Tampa Bay finishing over .500. Other teams did not do so well, as Fort Wayne and Toledo finished deep down the list, although not as bad as founding member Milwaukee who finished 12 and 30. Canton and Louisville remained the class of the league, winning their respective divisions and boasting the bulk of the top scorers. The playoffs went strictly according to regular season performance, with Chicago and Memphis advancing to the quarterfinals where they fell to Canton and Louisville. In the battle of the titans, Louisville finally took home the gold, defeating the Invaders 5-4, 5-4 (OT), 3-2, 3-4, 6-4, in a see-saw series than went the full five games.

The spending spree backfired somewhat as four teams, including league champion Louisville folded. Also closing shop were Chicago, and newcomers Toledo and Tampa Bay. The AISA retrenched the following season, continuing with four teams and a special tournament which featured some prospective expansion franchises.

 1986-87 AISA Final league Standings
Before the season, Ft. Wayne, Memphis, Tampa Bay and Toledo were added.
  Northern Division
Canton Invaders 42 31 11 .775 -- 255 165
Chicago Shoccers 42 26 16 .650 5 232 200
Toledo Pride 42 14 28 .350 17 179 210
Milwaukee Wave 42 12 30 .300 19 148 222
  Southern Division
Louisville Thunder 42 27 15 .675 -- 213 181
Memphis Storm 42 24 18 .600 3 180 166
Tampa Bay Rowdies 42 21 21 .525 6 170 172
Fort Wayne Flames 42 13 29 .325 14 157 218
Quarterfinals: Chicago defeated Toledo 4-5 OT, 7-1, 1-0(MG)
 Memphis def. Tampa Bay 4-1, ?-5, 3-2 (MG)
Semifinals: Canton def. Memphis 4-3 OT, 5-3 
Louisville def. Chicago 7-3, 5-4 
FINALS: Louisville defeated Canton 5-6, 5-4(OT), 3-2, 3-4, 6-4
After the season, Chicago, Toledo, Louisville, and Tampa Bay folded.
All-Star Game: Northern Division defeated Southern Division 7-5.
(at Louisville. Att: 2,473. Leading scorer: Elvis Comrie (North), 2 G, 1 A)
Leading Scorers GP G A TP
Rudy Pikuzinzki, Canton 42 51 30 81
Zoran Savic, Louisville 41 42 34 77
Salvador Valencia, Chicago 40 47 28 75
Carlos Salguero, Toledo 42 45 23 68
Elvis Comrie, Chicago 40 37 31 68
Kia Zolggharnain, Canton 42 34 31 66
Chris Hellenkamp, Louisville 41 26 36 62
Steve Wegerle, Tampa Bay 35 26 36 62
Jim Gabarra, Louisville 40 36 23 59
Oscar Albuquerque, Memphis 24 35 18 53
LEADING GOALKEEPERS (Min. 900 minutes to qualify)
 GP Min. Sho Svs GA W-L GAA
Yaro Dachniwski, Memphis 18 958 432 187 53 10-8 3.33
Jamie Swanner, Canton 24 1402 600 312 84 19-4 3.59
Arnie Mausser, Tampa Bay 35 2074 891 436 126 19-16 3.64
Victor Petroni, Louisville 26 1392 671 339 94 14-8 4.05
Bill Naumovski, Canton 20 1012 504 222 76 12-7 4.10
Most Valuable Player: Rudy Pikuzinski, Canton Invaders
Coach of the Year: Terry Nichol, Memphis Storm
Defender of the Year: Tim Tyma, Canton Invaders
Goalkeeper of the Year: Jamie Swanner, Canton Invaders
Rookie of the Year: Paul Zimmerman, Chicago Shoccers
All-AISA team:
G - Jamie Swanner, Canton Invaders
D - Greg Willen, Memphis Storm
D - Tim Tyna, Canton Invaders
M  Art Hughes, Louisville Thunder
M - Chris Hellenkamp, Louisville Thunder
F - Zoran Savic, Louisville Thunder
F - Rudy Pikuzinski, Canton Invaders

Southwest Indoor Soccer League

The Southwest Indoor Soccer League started in the fall of 1986 as a modest, five-team circuit in the American south-southwest region. By the end of the 20th century it would grow to become United Soccer Leagues, a wide-ranging multi-divisional organization of leagues that encompassed a major portion of the American professional soccer scene. The league was founded in Dallas by Francisco Marcos, originally designed both to provide a new source of income for arena operators, and also to provide a feeder system to develop talent for the Major Indoor Soccer League.

Marcos stressed the importance of grass-roots player development as being the essential component for establishing a solid foundation on which to develop professional soccer in the US. Hence, the league focused on a bottom-up, rather than top-down development plan. Marcos witnessed first hand the pitfalls of high-stakes big budget tactics during his ten years in the North American Soccer League and was determined not to repeat this mistake. The league also fit in well geographically - with the AISA concentrated in the Midwest, the SISL in the Southwest, and the MISL along the east and west coasts, the leagues did not overlap too much.

The league had five teams for its first season, the Albuquerque Outlaws, Amarillo Challengers, Garland Genesis, Lubbock Lasers and Oklahoma City Warriors. The league standings for this first season are not currently available, but the Garland Genesis won the championship match 7-2 over Lubbock.

 1986-87 SISL Final league Standings
Garland Genesis 12 11 1 49 12 98
Lubbock Lazers 12 10 2 36 13 90
Oklahoma City Warriors 12 8 4 23 16 68
Albuquerque Outlaws 12 6 6 32 30 57
Amarillo Challengers 12 5 7 31 35 52
Semifinal: Lubbock defeated Oklahoma City in a best of 3 series.
FINAL: Addision defeated Lubbock 7-2.
Note: Bonus points were awarded, hence the unusual placement of 
Lubbock and Oklahoma City.
Most Valuable Player: Greg Nicholas, Garland Genesis
Top goal scorer: Greg Nicholas (33 goals)
Assist Leader: Danny Perge (13 assists)
Top Goalkeeper: Steve Myers, Oklahoma City Warriors
Rookie of the Year: Ty Kongdara, Amarillo Challengers
Coach of the Year: Chico Villar, Oklahoma City Warriors 

Western Soccer Alliance (Div. 3)

The WSA fielded six teams for the 1987 season, losing Edmonton to the new Canadian league. The league made steady progress off the field, signing more prominent players, including several National Team members. These included David Vanole from the LA Heat, Marcelo Balboa, with San Diego, and Brian Doyle of the San Jose Earthquakes.

The season was cut back somewhat, to ten games, but this did not cool off the pennant race as three teams, San Diego, Seattle and San Jose finished tied for first, with San Diego winning based on total wins. This improbable result was due to the new scoring system. The league had eliminated ties and instituted overtime followed by penalty kicks for all regular season games. Teams received three points for every win plus one point for each goal scored up to a maximum of three per game. This made no distinction between true wins, and draws which went to penalty kicks. One result was that two teams tied San Diego for top spot on the basis of goals scored rather than number of wins. This may have been part of the strategy, to score more goals, but in later season, these complex bonus point system would have unforeseen and embarrassing consequences for the league.

One of the most positive developments was the increasingly high quality of players attracted to the WSA. Many top players with their eyes on the national team preferred the outdoor game, in order to be properly trained for upcoming World Cup and Olympic qualifiers, and for this season at least, the WSA was the best opportunity they had. The league instituted playoffs this year, with San Diego taking the championship by defeating San Jose 3-1 after the Earthquakes had defeated Seattle Storm in the wild card match.

 Final WSA League Standings, 1987
Before the season, Hollywood changed their name to California.
San Diego Nomads 10 6 4 1 0 1 1 17 9 31
Seattle Storm 10 5 5 1 1 1 1 16 14 31
San Jose Earthquakes 10 5 5 1 1 0 1 21 13 31
F. C. Portland 10 5 5 2 0 0 0 9 16 24
Los Angeles Heat 10 5 5 0 1 0 0 9 15 24
California Kickers 10 4 6 0 2 2 0 11 16 23
Wild Card: San Jose defeated Seattle 3-0
CHAMPIONSHIP: San Diego defeated San Jose 3-1
Leading Scorers: G A Pts
J. Mihaljevic, San Jose 7 2 16
Marcelo Balboa, San Diego 6 0 12
Geoff Wall, Seattle 4 4 12
Mike Enneking, Seattle 5 0 10
George Pastor, San Jose 4 2 10
John Hamel, Seattle 3 1 7
John Gerrard, Los Angeles 3 1 7
Jadir, San Jose 2 3 7
Stece Boardman, San Diego 2 3 7
John Sissons, San Diego 3 0 6
Amir Darabi, California 3 0 6
Leading Goalkeepers: Min GA SV SO GAA
Anton Nistl, San Diego 880 8 41 3 0.81
Jeff Koch, Seattle 572 6 11 3 0.94
Kurt Devlin, San Jose 935 13 45 2 1.20
David Jacques, California 580 8 26 1 1.24
Todd Strobeck, Portland 822 13 44 3 1.42
Most Valuable Player: Brent Goulet, F. C. Portland

Lone Star Soccer Alliance

The Lone Star Soccer Alliance had two models to draw upon: (1) Like the WSA, it was a regional league that provided a higher level of competition for independent and municipal league teams, and (2) the SISL, as a grass-roots developmental league that would be a talent feeder to the professional league that everybody hoped was on the horizon. The league started out modestly, with four teams from Texas area amateur leagues, and had a brief six game tournament won by the Dallas Express, based on their undefeated season.

 Final 1987 LSSA League Standings
Dallas Express 6 6 0 16 5 12
Houston Dynamos 6 3 3 15 12 6
Austin Thunder 6 2 4 8 9 4
San Antonio International 6 1 5 6 19 2
CHAMPIONSHIP: Dallas defeated Houston 5-3.

Canadian Soccer League

The Canadian Soccer League was the second attempt to create a national professional league in Canada, and it nearly succeeded. Learning their lessons from the CPSL debacle, the organizers attempted to lay the groundwork more successfully. Many teams were existing franchises from the provincial leagues. Edmonton came over from the WSA, Hamilton from the CNSL, and Toronto was a former NASL team which had survived for several years in the CNSL. Other teams, such as the Vancouver 86ers were new. The league got off to a good start with sizeable crowds, and a decent quality of talent, but the fragile economic status of many franchises, especially in the smaller cities, was a cause of major concern.

The CSL assembled a good roster of talent, including both MISL stars and National team players, as well as young talent that would eventually make an impact in Major League Soccer in the 1990's. Vancouver boasted Geoff Aunger, a striker who would join the National team in 1992, and Iain Fraser, the goalkeeper who would anchor the MLS New England Revolution in 1997. Other players included Olympian John Catliff, Ian Bridge, a former NASL player, Mark Watson, a future MLS star, and Alex Bunbury, a National Team veteran. Lyndon Hooper starred for the Ottawa Pioneers, and later would earn 66 caps for the National team. Other NASL veterans included John Kerr, Bobby Lenarduzzi, Carl Valentine, Dale Mitchell and Tino Lettieri, who was coming off a successful MISL indoor season. Also of note was Hector Marinaro who would go on to become the all-time scoring leader in the National Professional Soccer Leaguena, Domenic Mobilio, a future APSL star, and Branko Segota, who starred in both the NASL and MISL.

Unlike the American leagues, the CSL stuck to FIFA standards with three points for a win and 1 for a draw. The regular season was dominated by the Hamilton Steelers who won the East and Calgary kickers who won the west. Playoffs were merely confirming the obvious, and those teams met again in the finals, where Calgary defeated Hamilton 2-1 for the national league title.

 Final 1987 CSL League standings
  Eastern Division
Hamilton Steelers 20 10 6 4 32 22 26
Ottawa Pioneers 20 7 9 4 15 23 23
Toronto Blizzard 20 6 6 8 22 27 20
North York Rockets 20 1 7 12 15 39 9
  Western Division
Calgary Kickers 20 11 5 4 32 22 27
Vancouver 86ers 20 9 3 8 37 27 21
Edmonton Brickmen 20 7 7 6 27 24 20
Winnipeg Fury 20 5 4 11 25 36 14
Quarterfinals: Edmonton 1 at Vancouver 2
 Toronto 2 at Ottawa 1
Semi-finals: Vancouver 3 at Calgary 4
 Toronto 0 at Hamilton 1
CHAMPIONSHIP: Hamilton 1 at Calgary 2
Leading goalscorers:
Nick Gilbert, Calgary 10
Domenic Mobilio, Vancouver 9
Jerry Adzic, Hamilton 8
Norm Odinga, Edmonton 7
Han Kim, Winnipeg 7
Jim Easton, Vancouver 7
All-Star Team:
Sven Habermann, Calgary
Greg Kern, Calgary
Paul James, Hamilton
Randy Ragan, Toronto
Diego Castello, Edmonton
Jerry Adzic, Hamilton
Jim Easton, Vancouver
Ray Hudson, Edmonton
Nick Gilbert, Calgary
Ed McNally, Ottawa
Billy Domazetis, Hamilton

The US Men's National Team

With an eye to hosting the World Cup in 1994, the USSF began its rebuilding efforts for the national team. the first item was Olympic qualification. The roster included such names as Steve Trittschuh, David Vanole, Paul Caligiuri, John Harkes, Brian Bliss, Jim Gabarra, Eric Eichmann, Ted Hentak, Desmond Armstrong, Frank Klopas, Brent Goulet, Bruce Murray and Chico Borja. They were a mixture of MISL, WSA, AISA, amateur and college players. The league was finding the best talent wherever they could.

The first pair of games in May were a split verdict: after being shutout 2-0 by Canada, they returned the favor and upped the score, 3-0. This followed a Asian trip in June where they lost to Egypt and South Korea before beating Thailand 1-0. The real test came in September.

In the meantime, there were the Pan-American games, being hosted in the USA for the first time, at Indianapolis. The US shut out Trinidad 3-0, played El Salvador to a 0-0 draw, and then lost 2-0 to a much stronger Argentina. This gave the US 2nd place in their pool, not enough to advance. Brazil defeated Chile 2-0 for the gold medal, Chile for the silver, and Argentina took the bronze after a scoreless draw with Mexico, after which they won 5-4 on penalty kicks.

In the next round of Olympic qualifying, the Americans surprised everybody by winning a pair from Trinidad 4-1 and 1-0, and more importantly, beating El Salvador in an away game 4-2 (2 goals by hugo Perez). With only one game remaining, this left the Americans in an excellent position to return to the Olympics.

 USA Men's National Team results (+ = not full internationals)
 1987 Totals: 6W, 1D, 4L
Oct 18 87 W 4-2 El Salvador +San Salvador, El Salv (OLQ'88)
 Perez (2), Goulet, Klopas
Sep 20 87 W 1-0 Trinidad +Port of Spain, Trin. (OLQ'88)
Sep 05 87 W 4-1 Trinidad +Fenton, MO, USA (OLQ'88)
 Goulet (3), Stollmeyer
Aug 15 87 L 0-2 Argentina +Indianapolis, IN, USA (PAG)
Aug 12 87 D 0-0 El Salvador +Indianapolis, IN, USA
Aug 9 87 W 3-1 Trinidad +Indianapolis, IN, USA (PAG)
 Hantak (2), Klopas
Jun 16 87 W 1-0 Thailand Chonjju, South Korea
Jun 12 87 L 0-1 South Korea Pusan, South Korea
Jun 08 87 L 1-3 Egypt Seoul, South Korea
May 30 87 W 3-0 Canada Fenton, MO (OLQ'88)
 Krumpe (2), Gabarra
May 23 87 L 0-2 Canada St. John's, Canada (OLQ'88)

The US Women's National Team

The women's team expanded their playing schedule, but still was only gathering briefly a few times a year. The results showed continuing improvement however, as five significant players were ptomoted from the U-19 team to the top squad: Joy (Fawcett) Biefield, Kristine Lilly, Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy and Linda Hamilton. The team won 6 and lost 4, with highlights including a 2-0 shutout of China on August 3 (Jennings scoring her first two goals), and a 3-0 shutout over Norway in July. The final trip, to Taiwan in December featured five games, with the US going 3-2, including a 4-0 shutout of Canada and a 6-0 shutout of Australia. Although April Heinrichs was still the dominant player, others were beginning to emerge, and the team philosophy was clearly based on teamwork rather than single dominant players carrying the load.

 USA Women's National Team Results
 1987 results: 6W, 1D, 4L
Dec 20 87 L 1-2 Taiwan Taipei, Taiwan
Dec 19 87 W 4-0 Canada Tapiei, Taiwan
 Akers (2), Gmitter, Gebauer
Dec 16 87 W 6-0 Australia Taipei, Taiwan
 Henry, Akers, Biefeld
Dec 15 87 L 0-1 New Zealand Taipei, Taiwan
Dec 12 87 W 1-0 Japan Taipei, Taiwan
Aug 13 87 D 1-1 China Shenyang, China
Aug 03 87 W 2-0 China Tianjin, China
 Jennings (2)
Jul 11 87 L 0-1 Norway Blaine, MN, USA
Jul 09 87 L 1-2 Sweden Blaine, MN, USA
Jul 07 87 W 4-2 Canada Blaine, MN, USA
 Boyer-Murdoch Jennings, Heinrichs (2)
Jul 05 87 W 3-0 Norway Blaine, MN, USA
 Higgins, Heinrichs (2)

The College Game

In the NCAA Division 1 tournament, third round action saw Harvard defeated Adelphi 3-0. San Diego State defeated UCLA 2-1, Clemson defeated Rutgers 3-2, and North Carolina defeated Loyola Marymount 1-0. In the semifinals, San Diego State defeated Harvard 2-1 on PK's after double overtime, and Clemson defeated North Carolina 4-1. The championship was held on December 6 at Clemson, SC, where Clemson defeated San Diego State 2-0 for the national title.

In the NCAA Division 2 tournament, second round action saw Southern Connecticut State defeat LIU-C. W. Post 3-2. Missouri-St. Louis defeated Lock Haven 1-0, Tampa defeated Florida Tech 2-1, and Cal State Northridge 1-0. In the semifinals, Southern Connecticut defeated Missouri-St. Louis 1-0 and Cal State Northridge defeated Tampa 3-0. The championship was held on December 5 in Tampa, FL, where Southern Connecticut defeated Cal State Northridge 2-0 for the national title.

In the NCAA Division 3 tournament, third round action saw UNC-Greensboro defeat Rochester Inst. of tech. 2-0. Salem State defeated Clark (MA) 2-0, Cal State San Bernardino defeated Elizabethtown on penalty kicks after a scoreless tie and double overtime, and Washington (MO) defeated Ohio Weslayen 1-0. In the semifinals, UNC Greensboro defeated Salem State 2-1 and Washington, MO defeated Cal State San Bernardino 1-1 on penalty kicks after double overtime. The championship was held on November 21 in Greensboro, NC, where UNC Greensboro defeated Washington (MO) 6-1 for the crown.

In the NCAA Women's Division 1 tournament, second round action saw North Carolina defeat William & Mary 2-0. California defeated UC Santa Barbara 3-0, Central Florida defeated North Carolina State 3-0 and Massachusetts defeated Connecticut 3-1. In the semifinals, North Carolina defeated California 4-0, and Massachusetts defeated Central Florida 2-1. The National Championship was held in Amherst, MA on November 22, 1988, where North Carolina defeated Massachusetts 1-0 for the national title.

In the NCAA Women's Division 3 tournament, second round action saw St. Thomas (MN) defeat UN San Diego 1-0. William Smith defeated Cortland State 2-0, Rochester defeated Scranton 6-0, and Plymouth State defeated Methodist 2-0. In the semifinals, William Smith defeated St. Thomas (MN) 1-0 in double overtime and Rochester defeated Plymouth State 1-0. The championship was held in Rochester, NY on November 15, where Rochester defeated William Smith 1-0 for the national title.

NAIA Championship: (Men) Boca Raton defeated Simon Fraser 1-0 (3 overtimes).
NAIA Championship: (Women) Berry defeated Erskine 1-0.
NJCAA Men's Championship: Massasoit Community College 1, Miami-Dade NWC 0
NJCAA Women's Championship: Schoolcraft College 4, Nassau Comm. Coll. 0
NCCAA Division 1 Championship: The Master's College 3, Spring Arbor 0
NCCAA Division 2 Championship: Philadelphia College of Bible 3, Tocoa Falls 0

Coaches' Final Division 1 Poll - Men:
1. Indiana
2. South Carolina
3. Virginia
4. Harvard
5. Southern Methodist
6. Rutgers
7. Duke
8. North Carolina
10. Seton Hall
Coaches' Final Division 1 Poll - Women:
1. North Carolina
2. Massachusetts
3. California
4. North Carolina State
5. Colorado College
6. Connecticut
7. Central Florida
8. William & Mary
9. Barry
10. UC Santa Barbara
College All-Americans - Men:
G - Robert Willen, Virginia
D - Seamus Purcell, Providence
D - Paul Rutenis, Clemson
D - David Smyth, North Carolina
M - John Harkes, Virginia
M - Mark Mettrick, Hartwick
M - Tab Ramos, North Carolina State
F - Doug Allison, South Carolina
F - Bruce Murray, Clemson
F - Ken Snow, Indiana
F - Peter Vermes, Rutgers
College All-Americans - Women:
G - Janine Szpara, Colorado College
D - Debbie Belkin, Massachusetts
D - Kristen Bowsher, Massachusetts
D - Lori Henry, North Carolina
D - Megan McCarthy, William & Mary
D - Carla (Overbeck) Werden, North Carolina
F - Joy Biefield (Fawcett), California
F - Julie Cunningham, William & Mary
F - Kim Prutting, Connecticut
F - Jenni Symons, Santa Clara
F - Kerri Tashiro, Colorado College

Hermann Trophy: Bruce Murray, Clemson
Missouri Athletic Club Trophy: John Harkes, Virginia
NSCAA Division 1 Coach of the Year: Anson Dorrance, North Carolina
ISAA Player of the Year: Bruce Murray, Clemson
ISAA Goalkeeper of the Year: Robert Willen

Other Action

1987 US Open Cup Final: On June 21, Washington Club Espana defeated Seattle Eagles 0-0 (3-2 PK).

1987 National Amateur Cup Final: On June 21, Yonkers Polish American Eagles 3, Atlanta Datagraphic 1.

James P. McGuire (U-19 Men) Cup: Union (NJ) Lancers

Athena (U-19 Women) Cup: Sting, Dallas

U-20 World Championship: The US lost to Bulgaria 1-0, defeated Saudi Arabia 1-0 and lost to West Germany 2-1, failing to advance from pool play. Yugoslavia beat West germany 1-0 (5-4 PK) in the final.

U-16 World Championship: The US Beat Ecuador 1-0, and lost to Ivory Coast 1-0 and South Korea 4-2, failing to advance from pool play. The Soviet Union defeated Nigaria in the final 1-1 (3-1 PK)

CONCACAF Champions Cup: America (Mexico) defeated Defence Force (Trinidad) 3-1 for the title. Other details not available.

CONCACAF U-17 Championship: The United States did well again, finishing second to Mexico.

National Soccer Hall of Fame: In 1987, Mike Kabanica, Don Phillipson, and Thomas Webb were inaugurated into the National Soccer Hall of Fame. Vincent Forst and Greg Myers were inducted into the National Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association Hall of Fame.

USSF Male Player of the Year: Brent Goulet
USSF Female Player of the Year: Carin Jenings (Gabarra)

Last update: March 28, 2015

Back to American Soccer History Archives main page