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July 16, 2008
Wambach hurt as U.S. tops Brazil

Natasha Kai scored the only U.S. goal in the 85th minute.
Natasha Kai scored the only U.S. goal in the 85th minute.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
SAN DIEGO---Second half sub Natasha Kai scored in the 85th minute, giving the United States a 1-0 win over Brazil at Torero Stadium Wednesday night.

Despite the win over their bitter rivals, there was a definite down note to the game, as leading scorer Abby Wambach was stretchered off the field and taken to the hospital in the 38th minute with a possible broken leg.

Wambach collided with Brazilian Andrea Rosa and went down hard. She knew immediately she was badly hurt, and did not move the leg while signaling for medical attention.

Angela Hucles, who has been somewhat of a super-sub of late, came in for Wambach, as the U.S. looked to spread their attack.

The real spark came when Kai entered the game for Lindsey Tarpley in the 56th minute, giving life to the U.S. offense, as Amy Rodriguez, Heather O’Reilly and Carli Lloyd created numerous chances.

The first of those chances came in the 56th minute, when Lloyd blasted an 18-yard shot off a short corner that was stopped by goalkeeper Andrea.

A few minutes later, O’Reilly sent a ball across the goalmouth for Rodriguez, who had made a long run into the area. But Andrea met the ball from Rodriguez.

Lloyd spung Kai in the 75th minute, sending a long diagonal ball to the Hawaiian striker, who cut back in the area before sending a shot wide of the post.

Amy Rodriguez’s tenacity created the U.S. goal in the 85th minute. She battled to keep the ball in play before toe poking it to Kai, who was fouled near the right corner. Lloyd chipped the free kick out to the far post, where Kai rose up and headed it down past Andrea.

Wambach suffered a probable broken leg according to U.S. Soccer MatchTracker.

Wambach, who entered the match looking for her 100th international goal, gave her teammates a thumb's up as she was wheeled off the field.

If Wambach is lost for the Beijing Games, it would be disastrous for the U.S. She is the team's top goal-scorer and coach Pia Sundhage would have to work miracles for the Americans to win a gold medal.
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