Video: Hope Solo, Abby Wambach Lead USA Past Brazil

| by Alex Groberman

Team USA’s spectacularly thrilling victory over Brazil in penalty kicks restored a certain level of intrigue to a tournament run that, thus far, had been very lacking. Although the Americans had been performing more or less as expected, there was an undeniable lack of enthusiasm from all parties involved. That coupled with a surprising defeat at the hands of Sweden made many wonder whether the expectations that had been heaped onto this version of the U.S. women’s soccer team were too lofty.

As it turns out, they weren’t.

Throughout the course of Sunday’s exhilarating match, it seemed as though everything that could go wrong for the Americans, did go wrong. Awful calls, inexcusable lapses in judgment by the officials and bush league play tactics by the Brazilian side crippled the flow of the game. Yet somehow, in the final minute of overtime play, Abby Wambach knocked a shot home that tied the game up at 2-2 and sent the proceedings into penalty kicks.

Hope Solo, the U.S. team’s fiery goalkeeper did the rest. Sensing worry and anxiety coming from the completely unconfident Daiane, somehow, Solo got her hands on the ball and gave her team a one-score advantage the rest of the way through.

Check out the exciting penalty kicks portion of Sunday’s showdown in the video below.