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Alyssa Naeher Backstops USWNT To 2-0 Win In Final Group Stage Game Of 2019 World Cup

Penn State women’s soccer alumna Alyssa Naeher started in between the sticks for the United States Women’s National Team’s third and final game in the 2019 Women’s World Cup group stage, which ended in a 2-0 victory for the Americans.

The USWNT faced its toughest test yet in Sweden, the No. 9 team in FIFA’s global rankings. Both teams entered Thursday’s game with their spots in the round of 16 secured with six points from two games, but the USWNT topped Group F with the victory.

Unlike her first two appearances, Naeher got involved early against the Swedes. She made two saves in the first half, but Sweden’s attack failed to record a single shot on target in the second 45 minutes of the contest. The United States once again dominated in terms of possession, finishing with 62 percent of the ball against a strong Swedish side.

Head coach Jill Ellis’ side got off to strong starts in both halves of Thursday’s game. Lindsey Horan opened the scoring in the third minute before Tobin Heath’s shot was deflected by a Sweden’s Jonna Andersson, who was credited with own goal in the 50th minute, to double the USWNT’s lead.

She may have been an unused substitute on Thursday, but fellow Penn Stater Ali Krieger made headlines with a strong vote of confidence for her national side. Krieger said the United States had the “best team and the second-best team in the world” in reference to the United States’ depth at every position. All 20 outfield players on the USWNT played in some capacity during the group stage, but Naeher has been the only goalkeeper Ellis has used so far.

After today’s victory, the United States will take on Spain in the round of 16. That game is slated to begin at 11 a.m. Monday, June 24 in Reims, France, and you’ll be able to watch the game on FOX Sports 1.

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About the Author

Mikey Mandarino

Mikey is a senior majoring in journalism and Onward State's Sports Editor. He grew up in Bedminster, NJ and is way too obnoxious about all the best things his home state has to offer. Mikey loves to play golf, but he sucks at it because golf is hard. If you're dying to see more hockey/golf content on your timeline, you can follow Mikey on Twitter @mikey_mandarino. Send all hate mail, death threats, and your vote for the best chicken parm in State College to [email protected]

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