The Americans are moving on to the semifinals after one of the most riveting games in the history of the Women’s World Cup — beating Brazil 5-3 on penalty kicks after a 2-2 tie.
Abby Wambach tied it with a magnificent, leaping header in the 122nd minute, and goalkeeper Hope Solo denied the Brazilians again.
“We believe we can win this tournament,” Wambach said. “I don’t know if you can write a better script.”
For Brazil, it is yet another disappointment at a major tournament. And this one is sure to sting more than any others because Marta had it won for the Brazilians on Sunday, scoring her second goal of the game in the second minute of overtime for the 2-1 lead that would have sent the Americans to their earliest exit ever. But Erika stalled when she went down on a tackle, and the delay added three minutes of stoppage time to the game.
That was all the time Wambach and the Americans needed, after pushing themselves to limit while playing a woman short from the 66th minute on.