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July 10, 2011 at 11:27 PM

USWNT through to WWC semis after amazing win vs. Brazil

uswnt brazil.jpgPhoto credit: Odd Andersen, Getty Images

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Fortunately, amid the big Sounders-Timbers showdown, I was able to catch most of an unforgettable Women’s World Cup quarterfinal between the United States and Brazil.

Such drama! The USWNT would eventually win in a penalty-kick shootout.

The U.S. went up early on an own goal. Then the Brazilians leveled the score at 1-1 in controversial fashion when the referee mysteriously awarded a penalty kick to be retaken after goalkeeper Hope Solo came up with an amazing save (there might’ve been encroachment when a U.S. player entered the penalty box early).

Brazil went up 2-1 early in extra time on another somewhat controversial goal by Marta — her second on the night had hints of offsides in the buildup. Minutes later the U.S. was on the brink of elimination when midfielder Megan Rapinoe fired a brilliant cross to forward Abby Wambach, who powered home the equalizer.

Solo, a former UW star and Richland native, needed to make one save in the shootout as her teammates made all five tries — Ali Krieger netted the clincher. The U.S. advances to play France in the semifinals, while Japan plays Sweden on the other side. Action in the tournament resumes Wednesday.

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