Oct. 5, 2006
Santa Clara, Calif. - Santa Clara University freshmen Amaechi Igwe and Stephen McCarthy have been invited to join the U.S. Under-20 National Team in Sunrise, Florida for a four-day camp and closed-door match against the Under-23 Haitian team. On Oct. 8, Igwe and McCarthy will travel to Florida and train for three days under head coach Thomas Rongen, before facing Haiti on Oct. 11. The pair will be available for both SCU matches this weekend against Gonzaga and Portland before going to camp and will then return to Santa Clara on Oct. 12.
The camp begins preparation for the 2007 Under-20 Final Round Qualifying Tournament hosted by Mexico and Panama next year. Eight teams will be competing for the chance to play in the 2007 Under-20 FIFA World Cup in Canada.
The two freshmen have each appeared in all eleven games so far this season for the Broncos. Igwe has scored two goals and two assists so far, while McCarthy has been a mainstay in the Broncos midfield. Santa Clara is currently 6-3-2 in 2006 and ranked No. 17 in the country.
Igwe competed with the Under-20 national team in five previous matches in 2006. He saw time in two matches against Canada in Toronto in early July, before helping the U.S. to a second-place finish at the 2006 Milk Cup in Northern Ireland. In Canada, Igwe scored his first goal for the team on a header for the only U.S. goal on July 9th, and also assisted on Josmer Altidore's game-winning goal late in the first half in the previous game on July 7th. Igwe started two games in the Milk Cup.
Prior to arriving at Santa Clara in January, Igwe, 18, played at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. and was a part of the U.S. Under-17 residency program. He played in 18 career international games for the U.S. at the Under-17 level and scored one goal. In 2005, he played in 36 total games and scored five goals, before committing to Santa Clara, where he follows in his brother Kelechi's footsteps.
McCarthy is making his first appearance for the Under-20 team in Sunrise. The freshman midfielder from Colleyville, Texas was named as the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools Division 1 Offensive Player of the Year in 2006, and earned a spot on the All-State first team. With the Dallas Texans, McCarthy helped his team with the Texas State Cup in 2003, 2004, and 2005. The Texans won the national championship in 2005 as well. McCarthy comes to Santa Clara as a member of the National Honor Society from Nolan Catholic High School in Fort Worth.
The Broncos square off against Gonzaga on Friday, Oct. 6 at 3:00 p.m. PT in Spokane, Wash. and then take on the University of Portland Pilots in Portland, Ore. on Sunday, Oct. 8 at 2:15 p.m. PT.