September 3, 2013
By Charles Cuttone
HAT PLUS ONE
Leroux leads USWNT rout of Mexico
WASHINGTON, DC.---The United States Women’s National Team has always had a lopsided rivalry with Mexico. Tuesday’s friendly was no different, with Sydney Leroux scoring four goals in a 7-0 rout at R.F.K. Stadium.
|Sydney Leroux scored four goals in 20 minutes as the US Women routed Mexico 7-0 on Tuesday night.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
Abby Wambach got the ball rolling in the 11th minute. Kristie Mewis made an overlapping run down the left side of the field. Wambach, just a couple of days removed from playing the National Women’s Soccer League Championship game Saturday night, was all alone, amazingly unmarked in the area, and swept the ball from Mewis into the goal.
Ten minutes later, looking for her second goal of the night, Wambach took a shot from inside the area. Mexico’s 18-year old goalkeeper Cecilia Santiago made a two-handed stop of the shot, but could not hold onto the ball, and it flew straight onto the head of Leroux who redirected it into the goal.
Leroux was unstoppable after that. In the 23rd minute, a shot by Carli Lloyd was blocked by Santiago. Again Leroux was there for the opportunistic rebound, this time lurking at the right post to put the goal away.
A missed 20-yard shot by Mexico’s Monica Ocampo in the 29th minute started the sequence for the USA’s fourth goal, and Leroux’s third of the game. Hope Solo launched a goal kick past the midfield line. Wambach got a slight touch of her head on the ball, laying it into the path of Leroux, who made a long run into the area before being challenged by a defender. She made a falling away shot that slowly rolled past Santiago.
Leroux, who had a five goal game in Olympic Qualifying in 2012, got her fourth goal in the 41st minute. A long free kick by Lauren Holiday into the box found Leroux sailing in for a header.
It wasn’t just the USA’s two forwards who got in on the scoring. The U.S. made it 6-0 in the 55th minute. A corner kick was played into the box from the far side. Santiago punched it out. The rebound fell to Heather O’Reilly, but her shot was blocked. Rachel Buehler, who had just entered the game three minutes earlier for Christie Rampone, powered it through a forest of legs for her fifth international goal.
University of Virginia forward Morgan Brian got into just her second international game in the 70th minute. Less than seven minutes later, she had her first international goal. Wambach again played provider. With her back to the ball, she received a ball and laid if back to Brian, whose shot deflected up off a Mexican defender and into the goal
Her tally got the loudest roar from the crowd of 12,594, led by the entire UVA team, which had made the trip from Charlottesville for the game.
The U.S. almost conceded an early goal, in just the second minute. Maribel Dominguez made a long run down the right side on a ball over the top, and went around Solo, getting off a shot that the goalkeeper could not grab. Defender Crystal Dunn, last year’s Hermann Trophy winner, slid in front of the ball before it could do any damage.
Not all of the U.S. shots made it past Santiago, who is on the roster of the Boston Breakers. In the eighth minute, with the game still scoreless, Santiago slapped away a shot by Leroux and in the 13th minute, she made a diving stop of a 30-yard dipping shot by Carli Lloyd. After a scramble in the area in the 16th minute, Santiago stretched out to stop a 19 yard shot by Erika Tymrak.
Brian had another shot on goal in the 79th minute, this time from distance. Santiago got both hands on the ball but could not hold onto it, eventually grabbing it before the U.S. could get the rebound.
Mexico barely forced Solo and second half sub Nicole Barnhart into a sweat, taking only two shots on goal. While the U.S. had 12. The Americans had a total of 27 shots to only seven by El Tri.
The U.S. will get a six week break before reassembling for several more friendlies.