The video: In what's being called called a "stunning soccer triumph" and a goal that ranks with the game's best ever, the U.S. Women's National team triumphed over Brazil, and their superstar player Marta (a.k.a. "the female Pele"), in the Women's World Cup quarterfinals. (Watch clip below.) After a series of "bad calls," mostly in favor of Brazil, the U.S. women raucously snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. With the score at 2-1 Brazil, Abby Wambach headed in an "inch-perfect," 30-yard pass from Megan Rapinoe to tie the game up in the 122nd minute, making for the latest goal ever scored in the tournament's history. The game went into a penalty kicks shootout, in which the U.S. secured a dramatic win.
The reaction: This is "one of the toughest, most inspiring displays the sport has ever seen," says Kate Hasler Steilen at Grantland. Throughout the game the U.S. team "looked beatable," but ultimately "it was exactly the acknowledgment of its fallibility and its wholly American impatience that led to the win." Yes, the team could have easily accepted an overtime defeat after giving it their all, says Grahame L. Jones in the Los Angeles Times. "But acceptance is not the American way." At least not for American women, says David Hirshey at ESPN. "We have become accustomed in this country to its soccer teams, at least the male ones, radiating an attitude of 'we're just happy to be here' when it comes to tournament knockout rounds," but "for the women, however, anything less than winning the championship is considered a massive disappointment." Watch Wambach's miraculous, game-saving goal, below: