BRIDGETOWN, Barbados -- After routing Barbados at home, the United States managed only a slim victory on the road.
Already ahead by eight goals in the home-and-home, total-goals series, the Americans advanced to the regional semifinals of qualifying for the 2010 World Cup with a listless 1-0 win victory Sunday.
Eddie Lewis scored in the 21st minute off a through ball from 19-year-old Freddy Adu, who started his first World Cup qualifier.
"We knew it wasn't going to be a game of a lot of goals," said Lewis, who served as U.S. captain. "Barbados came out with a good mentality, and we knew if we were just patient and controlled the game, that the goal would come."
Lewis took the pass and put the ball through the legs of goalkeeper Alvin Rouse from 8 yards for his 10th goal in 80 international appearances.
The United States advanced on 9-0 aggregate following the big win at Carson, Calif., on June 15. The U.S. has outscored Barbados 20-0 in four meetings, all World Cup qualifiers, including two matches in 2000.
"This was an opportunity to use different players and it is important to get some young players experience. We had the confidence that we were strong enough defensively that we would hold together to get the win," U.S. coach Bob Bradley said. "Barbados deserves a great deal of credit for the mentality that they brought to the pitch today. From the start they played aggressively and tried to push the game more."
Seeking their sixth straight World Cup berth, the Americans will be in a semifinal group with Cuba, Guatemala, and Trinidad and Tobago. The top two teams advance to next year's regional finals, which will produce three World Cup qualifiers and fourth team that goes to a playoff against the No. 5 nation in South America for another berth.
The United States opens the regional semifinals on Aug. 20 at Guatemala, then plays Sept. 6 or 7 at Cuba, the first match there for the U.S. soccer team. The first American home game is Sept. 10 against Trinidad and Tobago at Bridgeview, Ill.
The U.S. hosts Cuba on Oct. 11 at Washington, plays at Trinidad and Tobago four days later and closes the round Nov. 19 against Guatemala at Commerce City, Colo.
Barbados, a Caribbean island nation of about 282,000 people, nearly tied the score in the 58th minute when Emerson Boyce's header beat goalkeeper Brad Guzan but bounced off the crossbar. John Parris put the ball in the net for Barbados in the 86th after Mark McCammon won a challenge with Guzan, but McCammon was whistled for being offside.
The United States changed seven starters from the first leg, keeping only Guzan, defender Heath Pearce, midfielder Michael Bradley and DaMarcus Beasley, who pushed up to forward.
Three of the U.S. starting midfielders -- Bradley, Danny Szetela and Sacha Kljestan -- could be part of the American Olympic team this summer, along with Adu.