USA (Unbelievable Soccer Awesomeness)

What a show.

This match had it all. Good and bad. In the end, Team USA performed a last-minute (literally) miracle that no doubt had countless people catching some serious air in their living rooms, in bars, and anywhere that had a television set nearby.

Still can’t believe Team USA pulled this one out. I mean, the script was already written. The final act was wrapping up. It was over. The US was done.

Or were they?

I’ll admit, I had no reason to believe that the ball lifted by Megan Rapinoe’s cross into the box would find a temporary landing spot on just the right part of Abby Wambach’s head and then would sneak inside the post for an equalizing goal with literally seconds to spare in – not just overtime, not just the second overtime session, but literally in extra time of that second overtime session…oh, just about at the end of that extra time too. Wha?? No way.

The odds of the US tying the match at that point were about as good as the odds of me becoming six feet tall someday. It just wasn’t gonna happen. But it did.

I was watching the match with my sons. (ESPN 3 is one of my ‘favorite things.’) They’re both into soccer and have started playing. When that thing went in, they both went crazy. Yelling and screaming and just loving the moment to the max. It was awesome.

The fact that Team USA benefited from a goalie infraction on the first penalty kick minutes later pretty much assured me all of the things that had gone against them in the match (questionable red card, more questionable penalty kick infraction earlier, shameful time-wasting by Brazil’s Erika late in the game) were officially in the books and in the past and were not going to stop them from at least having a chance at winning.

When the last PK went in, you just had to smile. What an effort. What a testament to never giving up, not letting adversity defeat you, and fighting until the end. Watching all of that served as a great lesson for my kids. Here they are right before that last kick.

Meanwhile this match provided a lot of thrills and a lot of smiles in the end for Team USA fans. Truly amazing stuff.

Way to go, ladies. Good luck in the semifinals.

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