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Dallas Soccer News - Alex Morgan leads US Women past New Zealand

Alex Morgan leads US Women past New Zealand

Published 2/11/2012 11:05:25 PM by staff from dallas
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Alex Morgan tied it in the 88th minute and added the winner just before the final whistle in stoppage time to give the US women's soccer team a dramatic 2-1 victory over New Zealand on Saturday in a chilly exhibition game at FC Dallas Stadium.

In stoppage time with the temperature around freezing, Rachel Buehler delivered a cross from the left wing into the middle, where Abby Wambach headed it high in the air. Morgan got under it about 6 yards in front of the net and headed it off the right post and in for the winner.

"It was a great ending. I think that we really pushed to the end, to the final whistle," said Morgan, who has four goals in her last two games. "We didn't want to come away with a loss, especially on home turf, so we definitely played it out to the end. Thank goodness we won."

Two weeks after winning the Olympic Qualifying tournament for the 2012 London Olympics with five straight victories by a combined score of 38-0, the Americans dominated possession but appeared headed for a stunning defeat before Morgan's late heroics.

"Alex's ability to score goals with Abby is phenomenal and I hope it stays like that," US coach Pia Sundhage said. "She's very powerful in her first step. She's always been a finisher, she's always been powerful, now we add movement off the ball and runs off Abby and the midfielders, and that makes a difference."

Hannah Wilkinson scored for New Zealand in the 49th minute.

Morgan tied it off a cross from Megan Rapinoe from the right flank. The pass found Morgan just off the left post, and her header initially appeared to go off the post before goalkeeper Jenny Bindon knocked it back into play, but Bindon was actually over the goal line.

"I saw 'Pinoe taking it down. She's great with crossing, so I tried to get to the back post," Morgan said. "My heading isn't fully where I want it to be right now, but I think it crossed the line and I think the referee saw that, so we were thankful for that and I think that motivated us to get another goal."

 



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