United States forward Christen Press (white) shoots on diving Australia goalkeeper Lydia Williams in an international friendly on October 20, 2013, at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo: Thomas B. Shea/isiphotos.com)
SAN ANTONIO, Texas – The United States got goals from four different players on Sunday to defeat visiting Australia 4-0 in a women’s international friendly and extend its home unbeaten streak to 74 matches.
Lauren Holiday and Carli Lloyd scored early in the encounter, while Abby Wambach and Christen Press added second-half tallies in front of 19,109 spectators at the Alamodome.
For his first time as U.S. head coach, Tom Sermanni was pitted against an Australia side that he coached during two different stints over an 11-year span. In 24 all-time meetings, the Americans have never lost to Australia (22-2-0).
The host went ahead in the sixth minute through Lauren Holiday. A Becky Sauerbrunn free kick from near the right sideline was headed high by Australia, but not cleared. The ball fell to Holiday, whose attempt from just inside the penalty area deflected off an Australian defender and into the net for her 21st career goal.
Eight minutes later, the U.S. added to its lead when Alex Morgan slipped a partially deflected pass on the ground across the top of the penalty area for Lloyd to fire into the right side of the net for a 2-0 lead.
Undaunted, Australia did manage to produce scoring chances, mostly through forward Lisa De Vanna. U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo was called upon to make four first-half saves, with three of them coming off the foot of the swift Sky Blue FC striker.
De Vanna had a breakaway in the second minute and her left-footed shot deflected off of Solo’s glove, clipped the crossbar and went out of play. Solo also made a diving save to her left against De Vanna in the 20th minute and a quick reaction save with her left foot in the 27th minute.
In the 56th minute, the U.S. added to its advantage thanks to Wambach. The 33-year-old forward was able to reach a Lloyd chip and redirect the ball with the outside of her right foot into the net before Australia goalkeeper Lydia Williams could intervene.
Press completed the scoreline in the first minute of stoppage time, finding the upper right corner from seven-yards out after Morgan smartly dummied a left-sided cross from Heather O’Reilly.
The U.S. will return to action on October 28, facing New Zealand in San Francisco, California.