WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) — Sydney Leroux scored in the 78th minute to help the U.S. women's soccer team tie Canada 1-1 on Thursday night, extending the Americans' unbeaten streak against the Canadians to 30 games.
Leroux kicked Canadian Rebecca Quinn's errant crossing header under goalkeeper Erin McLeod in front of 28,255 fans at Investors Group Field, one of six venues for the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup.
"It was great for Canada soccer, it's great for women's soccer and we were excited to play in front of a crowd like this," Leroux said. "It was very physical, and I don't think we played very well in the first half, but I think we came together in the second half and started playing our soccer. At halftime we said, 'We are not going to make it easy for Canada to beat us, ever.' We knew we had a lot of time left."
Leroux leads the U.S. with six goals this year and has 30 overall for the national team, 20-0-5 against Canada since a loss in the 2001 Algarve Cup. Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Leroux has scored in three straight games against Canada.
"When you play Canada, it's 50 percent preparation, organization and structure and 50 percent emotion," U.S. interim coach Jill Ellis said.
"I challenged them at halftime and said that we needed to be more of the aggressor and we definitely put some pressure on them. The other thing we talked about was composing ourselves. It was a big crowd, big atmosphere and the adrenaline was pumping and we actually needed to calm ourselves a bit and connect some passes."