U.S. Women’s Soccer caps off unbeaten streak in Orlando


Ty Wright / Valencia Voice

Abby Wambach scored on a penalty kick during Sunday’s game.

ORLANDO, Fla. — Make that 16 games unbeaten to end the 2013 calendar year.

Sydney Leroux’s second half brace lifted the United States Women’s National Team to victory, defeating Brazil, 4-1,on Sunday afternoon in front of 20,274 fans at the Florida Citrus Bowl.

“She (Sydney LeRoux) has just grown this year, it’s unbelievable,” said U.S. head coach Tom Sermanni. “She’s taken opportunity that’s been given to her, and she’s getting better each time she goes on the field.”

While Brazil looked to poised to break the deadlock in the first minutes of the game, the U.S. didn’t waste no time on capitalizing on Brazil’s defensive errors.

Stephanie Cox lead a three-woman counter attack as she whipped in a ball toward the box, which found Heather O’Reilly who volleyed the ball toward Sydney LeRoux’s direction, leaving the Boston Breakers striker to execute on the open opportunity in the 15th minute for the 1-0 lead.

“I have an amazing team that feeds me great goals,” said LeRoux on her performance. “It was an absolutely amazing atmosphere in Orlando, and we’re very happy to play in front of great people.”

Moments later, the U.S. doubled the lead in the 17th minute when Wambach was brought down in the box by a Brazilian defender, leaving the all-time scorer for the U.S. to drill the ball past goalkeeper Thais.

Brazilian captain Rosana cut the lead to 2-1 in the 25th minute after she headed in a cross from Rilany, but it was LeRoux’s lone-goal effort in the 36th minute that sealed the match. Wambach was able to play a through-ball that found the 23-year-old, leaving LeRoux to rush past the goalkeeper to bag her brace and the 3-1 lead.

Midfielder Erika Tymrak, who made her second appearance in the red, white and blue, came in as a second-half substitute for Stephanie Cox, and didn’t waste no time to open her scoring account. The former University of Florida player scored in the 76th minute after Lindsey Horan placed the ball for her to drill past the keeper for the insurance fourth goal.

The U.S. Women’s soccer team finished the year unbeaten for the second time in their history, and prepare for the FIFA Women’s World Cup qualification next year.