Hair-pulling woman footballer suspended

NEW YORK: Once the darlings of American sport for their global success, women''s football players are now internet video hits thanks to a hair-pulling harridan and a set of US teen girls gone wild.

Highlights making the rounds on US television and with on-line video viewers now feature University of New Mexico defender Elizabeth Lambert pulling down an opponent by her ponytail and a late-game brawl between high school girls.

Lambert was handed an indefinite suspension for her actions on Thursday in a 1-0 Mountain West Conference playoff semi-final loss to Brigham Young University, which including hitting, kicking and punching rivals.

Lambert apologized for her actions, still under review by conference officials for possible further action, but the video of her punch-and-pull performance has proven popular viewing.

In the wake of the incident came a Sunday brawl in Rhode Island involving a fight between Woonsocket and Tolman girls football teams.

Woonsocket led 5-0 in the final seconds when two players ran into each other, touching off a fight between players who punched and pulled hair and inspired post-game fights in the stands.

Only a decade ago, the host US national team defeated China in the Women''s World Cup final. A second US women''s pro league, Women''s Professional Soccer, debuted this year with top talent from around the world.