NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Alex Morgan and Julie Ertz prolonged their recent scoring binges for the United States, while Megan Rapinoe showcased her knack for exposing weaknesses in even the most technically sound defenses.
Morgan scored in a fourth straight game, Ertz scored for the fourth time in five games and the U.S. beat South Korea 3-1 on Thursday night.
Rapinoe added her 34th international goal on a penalty kick that she drew. She earned her 42nd assist on a corner kick that Ertz redirected with a diving header.
“That’s what she does,” U.S. coach Jill Ellis said about Rapinoe, who controlled the tempo of the friendly with ambitious, accurate passes from her position on the left wing. “She’s very comfortable on that left side and is a world-class server of the ball. She continues to want more from herself because that’s just the type of player she is.”
The U.S. finished with an 11-1 advantage in shots on goal, primarily because of a slew of chances created by Rapinoe.
She drew her penalty kick in the 49th minute when she pounced on a loose ball about 12 yards in front of the goal and was tripped by Ji Sohyun. Rapinoe struck her goal hard and down the middle, seemingly sensing that goal keeper Kang Gaae would cheat toward one side.
“Can’t tell you. It’s a secret,” Rapinoe said about her approach to the penalty kick.