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USWNT steamrolls New Zealand in penultimate World Cup tune-up

Photo Copyright Patricia Giobetti for The Equalizer

Tobin Heath, Rose Lavelle, Carli Lloyd and Sam Mewis each scored as the United States women’s national team defeated New Zealand, 5-0 on Thursday at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri, in the Americans’ penultimate World Cup warm-up match.

Defender Ali Krieger reached the milestone of her 100th cap for the U.S. when she entered the match in the 60th minute.

Heath opened the scoring in the 35th minute, when she found herself unmarked at the back post to tap in a cross from Megan Rapinoe.

Lavelle doubled the U.S.’ lead five minutes later on a much similar play, in which New Zealand fullback Anna Green was caught ball-watching. Lindsey Horan assisted the goal.

The U.S. controlled the game in the opening half-hour but struggled to find the final ball around goal, often settling for crosses from deeper, wide areas. But As Crystal Dunn and Rapinoe began to turn the corner on their defenders and get to the end line, the Americans’ fortunes changed.

New Zealand’s fatigue showed in the second half as the U.S. used all six substitutions. Lloyd scored on her first touch of the game in the 61st minute tapping in a pass from Heath after Mewis opened up the play with a brilliant through ball. Lloyd would add a fourth U.S. goal in the 83rd minute — another tap-in — and Mewis scored from distance a minute later for the Americans’ fifth.

The U.S. will play one more official match before the World Cup, against Mexico on May 26 at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey.

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