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Monday, Aug. 15, 2005

Urawa, Marinos book semi spots

Both notch easy aggregate wins in Nabisco Cup

SAITAMA (Kyodo) Makoto Hasebe scored the only goal of the game in the dying minutes Sunday as Urawa Reds beat Shimizu S-Pulse 1-0 in the second leg of their J. League Nabisco Cup quarterfinal to reach the semifinals along with Yokohama F. Marinos.

Hasebe, who also struck the winner in Urawa's 1-0 win at Shimizu a week ago, finished off a swift counterattack with a clinical finish in the 89th minute to help give Urawa a place in the last four for the fourth straight year with a 2-0 aggregate victory.

Shimizu had to play with 10 men after South Korean striker Cho Jae Jin was sent off for his second yellow card of the night in the 32nd minute.

Urawa won the 2003 Nabisco Cup title while finishing runnerup in 2002 and 2004. In the two-legged semifinals on Aug. 31 and Oct. 5, it plays JEF United Chiba, which had advanced after eliminating Jubilo Iwata 5-4 on aggregate.

In Sunday's other match, Marinos ran out 3-1 winner at home to Omiya Ardija to add to its 1-0 win in the away leg.

Daisuke Sakata, Naoki Matsuda and Norihisa Shimizu found the target as the defending J. League champion clinched a spot in the semis for the first time since it won its only Nabisco Cup four years ago.

Sakata opened the scoring after 16 minutes before Omiya drew level on the night on the half hour. But Marinos continued to be in control and regained the lead with a 61st-minute header from Matsuda before substitute Shimizu added the third with four minutes left.

The victory set up a semifinal date with Gamba Osaka, which had knocked out crosstown rival Cerezo Osaka 5-2 on aggregate.

The final is scheduled for Nov. 5 at National Stadium in Tokyo.

South beats North

SEOUL (AP) Park Chu Young sealed South Korea's resounding 3-0 win Sunday over North Korea in a soccer friendly marking the start of joint celebrations of the 60th anniversary of the peninsula's liberation from Japanese rule.

Midfielder Chung Kyung Ho found the net with a header off a free kick from Kim Do-heon in the 33rd minute to open the scoring.

Just two minutes later, Kim Jing Yong volleyed in from point-blank range to put the host ahead 2-0.

Star forward Park put the win beyond doubt in the 67th minute when he beat several North Korean defenders to sneak a right-footer just past North Korean goalkeeper Kim Myong Gil.

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