Solo back in net for women's soccer

CHICAGO - Goalkeeper Hope Solo was among 18 players picked yesterday for the U.S. Olympic women's soccer roster, nine months after she was kicked off the team at the World Cup.

Briana Scurry, who took over from Solo for last year's World Cup semifinal loss to Brazil, was left off the roster by coach Pia Sundhage, who replaced Greg Ryan after the World Cup debacle.

Solo was the starter for most of 2007, but Ryan surprisingly replaced her with Scurry for the semifinal, which the Americans lost, 4-0. Solo criticized Ryan, saying she would have made the saves, and was dropped from the team.

Sundhage, who has led the team to an 18-0 record, said the events of last year did not play into her decision. Nicole Barnhart, who also was on the Peace Cup roster, will be Solo's Olympic backup. She is from Gilbertsville, Pa., and played on the boys' team at Boyertown High School.

Solo, Scurry and Barnhart were on the roster for the Peace Queen Cup tournament in South Korea. Solo played as the Americans beat Canada, 1-0, to win the title Saturday.

Half the roster was part of the gold-medal-winning U.S. team at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Defenders Christie Rampone of Point Pleasant, N.J., and Kate Markgraf, the cocaptains, will be in their third Olympics. Also returning from the 2004 team are defender Heather Mitts; midfielders Shannon Boxx, Angela Hucles, Heather O'Reilly of East Brunswick, Lindsay Tarpley and Aly Wagner; and forward Abby Wambach.

Delran's Carli Lloyd, a Rutgers graduate, also made the team. The U.S. roster is missing midfielder Leslie Osborne and defender Cat Whitehill, both sidelined by torn knee ligaments. Forward Kristine Lilly, who has been part of all eight U.S. Women's World Cup and Olympics teams, said in January that she was pregnant and taking 2008 off.

The Americans have first-round games against Norway on Aug. 6, Japan on Aug. 9, and New Zealand on Aug. 12. Before heading to China, the U.S. team is at Norway on July 2 and at Sweden on July 5, then will play Brazil on July 13 at Commerce City, Colo., and July 16 at San Diego.

Field hockey selections. USA Field Hockey announced the U.S. Olympic team for women's field hockey, which is making its first appearance since 1996.

The players are Kate Barber of West Chester; Kayla Bashore of Shoemakersville, Pa.; Lauren Crandall of Doylestown; Rachel Dawson of Berlin, Camden County; Kelly Doton of Greenfield, Mass.; Katelyn Falgowski of Landenburg, Pa.; Jesse Gey of Greenlane, Pa.; Carrie Lingo of Rehoboth Beach, Del.; Angie Loy of Loysville, Pa.; Caroline Nichols of Virginia Beach; Lauren Powley of Mountaintop, Pa.; Dina Rizzo of Walpole, Mass.; Dana Sensenig of Denver, Pa.; Keli Smith of Selinsgrove, Pa.; Tiffany Snow of Escondido, Calif.; and Amy Tran of Grantville, Pa.

The U.S. national team will open competition on Aug. 10 against 2007 Pan American champion Argentina.

The United States is slotted in Pool B with Argentina, Germany, Britain, Japan and New Zealand.

Gatlin not cleared by IOC. The International Olympic Committee said banned sprinter Justin Gatlin, whose four-year doping ban recently was upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, is not eligible to compete in the Beijing Olympics regardless of any ruling by a federal court judge in Pensacola, Fla.

On Friday, U.S. District Judge Lacey A. Collier issued a temporary restraining order that would allow the defending Olympic 100-meter champion to compete in the 100-meter rounds at the U.S. Olympic track and field trials, which begin Friday in Eugene, Ore.