Crocketteers road trip to Frisco. Picture is of the Crocketteers section. Total of 84 made it up to FC Dallas Park.
By Chris Hockman-Soccer reporter for the San Antonio Examiner
The USA has never lost a match in Texas at any level and that trend continued, but only just in Dallas on Saturday as the US Women’s National Team managed a late 2-1 win against New Zealand in frigid conditions.
It was always going to be tough for New Zealand, who have never ammounted to much on the world stage, despite dominating the OFC since Australia’s departure and the USA went for it from the opening whistle, controlling possession well.
To New Zealand’s credit they didn’t just sit back and looked to play their speedy strikers through, but their 4-3-3 left them vulnerable in midfield allowing the USA to counter quickly.
In just the ninth minute the USA should have taken the lead as Ali Riley brought down Alex Morgan seemingly outside the box, but the referee pointed to the spot, Abby Wambach’s penalty was poor and came off the post after sending the keeper the wrong way allowing New Zealand to clear.
The chances fell again for the USA as New Zealand failed to deal with a corner, Jenny Bindon dropped the ball at Rachel Buehler’s feet, only for Buehler to send her shot from point-blank range over the bar.
Morgan did well in the 17th minute to work her way past two defenders with some nice footwork but failed to challenge Bindon with her chance, hitting it straight at the keeper.
Rebecca Smith almost put New Zealand in trouble in the 28th minute as her backpass was much to light for Bindon who managed to run out of the box well and clear, keeping the USA out.
The USA continued to dominate possession and in the 33rd minute should have had a goal with Heather O’Reilley wide open, but Bindon came out well and claimed a poor cross.
Lauren Cheney was next up just one minute later as she found space 20 yards out but sent her curling strike just over the bar, as the USA desparately pushed for a goal before halftime.
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