Two late goals from Alex Morgan gave the U.S. Women’s National Team a thrilling 2-1 win over New Zealand on Saturday afternoon.
“It wasn’t meant to be like that,” USWNT coach Pia Sundhage said of the late rally. “We made it really, really exciting.”
Morgan scored in the 88th minute off a cross from the right side of the field from Megan Rapinoe.
That triggered wave after wave of U.S. attackers as the game entered stoppage time.
Morgan scored on a header from Abby Wambach in the 94th minute to send the sellout crowd at FC Dallas Stadium into a frenzy.
“It’s probably the highest I’ve ever jumped in my life,” Wambach said.
Morgan, who said her memory usually blackouts during goals, remembers Wambach heading the winning ball toward her and trying to get into position to get the ball into the net.
“It was a great ending,” Morgan said.
The win capped a storybook week for the USWNT in North Texas.
Final attendance was 20,677 at FC Dallas Stadium. That made it the largest attended USWNT match in the U.S. in nearly a decade.
The support was even more notable for the chilly conditions in Frisco. Game time temperature was in the mid 30s and a brisk wind made it feel even cooler.
Morgan and Wambach said the fan support was overwhelming.
“You could really hear the fans,” Morgan said. “We haven’t seen this much support since ‘99.”
Wambach said the team noticed the difference in volume being in a soccer-specific stadium compared to a larger multi-purpose venue.
“It makes for such a fun soccer environment.”
Wambach could have scored the first goal of the match, but her penalty kick bounced off the left post in the 10th minute.
The game was scoreless at halftime, but New Zealand’s Hannah Wilkerson scored in the 49th minute off a misplayed pass by the USWNT defense.
But the late U.S. surge ensured fans went home happy.
“Today was a classic United States win,” Wambach said.