Lauren Cheney's Goal Lifts U.S. Women's National Win 1-0 over Mexico

Cesar Diaz@@gritwriterCorrespondent IIJune 6, 2011

HARRISON, NJ - JUNE 05: Abby Wambach #20 of the United States has her shot saved by goalkeeper Ceci Santiago #20 of Mexico under pressure from Alina Garciamendez #4 during their International Friendly at Red Bull Arena on June 5, 2011 in Harrison, New Jersey.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

Harrison, NJ—Prior to Sunday's friendly women's match between the U.S. and Mexico, U.S. legend Kristine Lilly was honored for her historic career.

Lilly appeared in five Women’s World Cup where she won two titles, and three Olympic Games where she won two gold medals. After 23 years on the national team, Lilly retired in January and finished with a world record 352 caps and 130 goals.

Sunday's match was a send-off match for the United States as they head to Germany for to win the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup. Despite their inability to produce more goals, this game demonstrated how offensively dangerous this is and why they're ranked No. 1 in the world.

Lauren Cheney's long-distance blast provided the exclamation point to a dominating performance from the United States Women's National Team as they defeated Mexico 1-0 at Red Bull Arena.

Offensively, the United States out-shot Mexico 34-4 and had a 14-2 shot on goal advantage. In addition, they took nine corner kicks to Mexico's 1 while demonstrating how easily they're able to advance the ball.

The only flaw in Sunday's U.S performance was their inability to score from so close. Despite the 14 shots on goal they took, finding the net was a problem. With the beautiful ball movement demonstrated by the U.S., their lack of goal production is forgivable because the 5,852 fans were entertained.

While the United States may have statistically dominated Sunday's match, the player who shined the most was Mexican goalkeeper Ceci Santiago. The 16-year-old goalkeeper almost single-handedly gave her team a scoreless draw as she threw her body all over the place and made several climatic saves.

For the game, she recorded eight saves. Her magnificent performance was good enough to earn the approval of the crowd as they enthusiastically clapped and cheered whenever she made a spectacular save.

While Mexico had a difficult time of advancing the ball, they were able to play excellent penalty-area defense as they prevented the United States from scoring from so close. With Sunday's game behind them, Mexico will face England, Japan and New Zealand in the first round at the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup.

Now looking forward to winning the Women's World Cup for the third time, the United States begin their quest when they face first round opponents Korea DPR, Colombia and Sweden.

The 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup will take place from June 26-July 17 in nine venues across Germany: Berlin, Frankfurt, Mönchengladbach, Sinsheim, Wolfsburg, Augsburg, Bochum, Dresden and Leverkusen.

The USA will depart on June 14 for a training camp in Austria and then will arrive in Dresden, Germany, several days before its Women’s World Cup opener against the Koreans.

With the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup taking place in Germany, the 16 nations competing include: host Germany, Korea DPR, Japan, Australia, Sweden, Norway, France, England, New Zealand, the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, Brazil and Colombia.

Cesar Diaz covers Soccer for LatinoSports.com. He also writes for 5 Points Press & USSoccerPlayers.com ; your source for American Soccer news brought to you by members of the U.S. National Team. Easily accessible, you may reach Cesar at cesar@latinosports.com and at Twitter at @CoveringSoccer


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