ONEONTA, N.Y. -- Former U.S. National Team defenders Alexi Lalas and Carla Overbeck, Olympian Al Trost, and builder Philip Anschutz were inducted Monday into the National Soccer Hall of Fame. Lalas, who raised awareness of the sport in the United States, appeared in 96 games for the U.S., scoring nine goals and 11 assists -- an impressive total for a defender. Professionally, he was the first player born in the U.S. to play in the Italian Serie A, and for seven seasons was a standout in Major League Soccer. Representing the U.S. at two World Cups, Lalas, with his red goatee and long hair, was the most recognized face of U.S. soccer during the landmark 1994 World Cup. Off the field, he was known for his intelligent banter with the media. Since retiring as a player he has served in a management capacity for several MLS teams. Overbeck was part of the original crop of U.S. Women's National Team stars, serving as the team's longtime on-field leader through two Women's World Cup titles and the 1996 Olympic gold medal triumph. The popular defender scored seven goals from 1988 to 2000, starting every game for the U.S. at the 1991, 1995 and 1999 FIFA Women's World Cups. She also was team captain during the championship run in 1999. Trost, one of the most important contributors to the soccer hotbed that is his hometown of St. Louis, scored two goals while playing for the U.S. at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Germany. A two-time Hermann Trophy winner at St. Louis University, Trost also had a successful seven-year career in the NASL. Anschutz has been a key leader in the growth of Major League Soccer and the construction of soccer-specific stadiums, including The Home Depot Center and Toyota Park. His company, AEG, has served as owner-operator for numerous MLS franchises.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press