Wambach scores 3 goals to lead US over Haiti 5-0
After beating Haiti 5-0 in the opening qualifier for next year’s
Women’s World Cup, U.S. players went to the Haitians’ locker
The Americans gave them clothes, cleats and other soccer gear,
and Abby Wambach spoke to the opponents, saying the U.S. team
wanted to show support for a nation still trying to rebuild from an
earthquake in January that killed as many as 300,000 people.
”We wanted them to know that we were thinking of them and we
wished them good luck in the rest of the tournament,” Wambach
Wambach had the sixth hat trick of her international career,
helping the 1991 and 1999 champions get off to a quick start.
Defender Rachel Buehler put the U.S. ahead in the 8th minute,
scoring her first international goal in her 43rd appearance.
Wambach scored in the 15th minute, added a goal in first-half
injury time and scored her third goal in the 62nd, raising her
career total for the United States to 112.
Amy Rodriguez, making her 50th appearance, scored her ninth
career goal in the 40th minute off a pass from Wambach.
”We could have possessed the ball better, but it’s the start of
the tournament so I understand that sometimes the team is a little
uncomfortable because they haven’t played together that much and
sometimes the attack broke down a little too early,” American
coach Pia Sundhage said. ”But five good goals and a win, I’ll take
that any day.”
Nicole Barnhart got the shutout for the U.S., which completes
the first round against Guatemala on Saturday and Costa Rica on
In the night’s other Group B game, Costa Rica beat Guatemala
Group A opens Friday, when Trinidad and Tobago plays Canada, and
Mexico faces Guyana.
The top two teams in each group advance, and the semifinal
winners qualify for next year’s tournament in Germany. The
third-place squad meets Italy, the No. 5 team in Europe, for