Alex Morgan, Samantha Mewis score to lead U.S. past Germany
BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Alex Morgan and Samantha Mewis scored and the United States rallied to beat Germany 2-1 on Wednesday night to win the SheBelieves Cup.
The U.S. was 3-0-0 in the four-team event. Germany (2-1-0) finished second.
"You put two great teams on a small pitch, and the intensity was fantastic,'' U.S. coach Jill Ellis said. "This tournament was essential for us to continue to grow."
In front of 13,501 fans at FAU Stadium, Germany opened the scoring in the 29th minute when Anja Mittag beat goalkeeper Hope Solo with a low, hard shot to the left corner of the net. It was the first goal allowed by the Americans since a 1-0 loss to China on Dec. 16.
The Americans, who have won all nine of their matches this year, tied it on Morgan's goal in the 35th minute, and Mewis added the winner in the 41st minute on a shot that deflected off a defender's leg. It was just the second goal for Mewis in eight career games with the national team.
"She can operate in tight spaces and has tremendous technical ability," Ellis said about Mewis. "Her physical dimension was very good. I wanted to see if she could handle the top teams."
Morgan said her goal, which came on the left wing after a pass from Meghan Klingenberg, was special.
"It ranks up there especially the fact that we were down 1-0, and we were able to come back so quickly and win our first domestic tournament," Morgan said. "It was pretty big for me."
Morgan was named the Woman of the Match and also won the Golden Boot and Golden Ball awards for the tournament.
"With Alex, we started to see it in January in training,'' Ellis said. "She's fit. She's healthy."
For the tournament, Solo earned the Golden Glove award given to the top goalie.
The teams met for the first time since the Americans' 2-0 victory in Montreal last year in the World Cup semifinals. The U.S. is 8-0-5 against Germany since 2003.
They could meet again soon in the Olympics in Brazil. Of the 22 players who were part of Wednesday's game for the U.S., 19 are on the Olympic roster.