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U.S. Scores First Against France In World Cup Semifinal

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American Heather O’Reilly fed a perfect pass to Lauren Cheney, and the result was a score from close range in the ninth minute, as the U.S. women’s national team got an early edge over France in the semifinals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

In the game’s early minutes, play was fast and spirited, each team hoping to get that all-important first goal.

U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo had to deflect a hard shot from Louisa Necib, sending it over the top of the goal post. And Laurel Cheney had a beautiful run through the midfield in the fifth minute, eluding defenders before dropping the ball off.

The American women are trying to advance to the finals and win the World Cup for the first time since 1999. There, they’ll face either Sweden or Japan. The title match will be played on Sunday, July 17.

The U.S. arrived in the semifinals after a nerve-wracking penalty kick win over Brazil.

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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