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Sacramento Cheers On Team USA In World Cup

Bob Moffitt / Capital Public Radio

Lilli Bewley, Troy Haymie, and Kristen Lehr celebrate a U.S. goal during the team's match vs Belgium.

Bob Moffitt / Capital Public Radio

 

A good portion of Sacramento took time off work to cheer on the U.S. national soccer team's efforts in Brazil during today's World Cup match against Belgium.

At the Field House on Fulton Avenue Ann Fraire drew on people with a red white and blue grease pencil to help them show their patriotism. 

"We're gonna win....hopefully," said Fraire. After a relatively even first half, Kristen Lehr was cautiously optimistic the U.S. would prevail. "I'm not surprised. I could be a little bit happier. I think they need to be a little more aggressive. But, we got this. We can do this. I'm hopeful. I'm stressed and I'm hopeful." The U.S. would have done well to follow her advice. Belgium had increasingly better looks at a goal in the second half, but the U.S. held.

One hundred seventy five people at the Field House did their best to send positive vibes south as the match went into extra time. "U-S-A, U-S-A," the room chanted. But, vibes didn't help. Belgium struck first. Kristen and Lillie covered their heads with their arms. 

The pub was virtually silent after a walk-in-the-park goal by Belgium late in extra time.Just when all seemed lost, Julian Green took a ball out of midair for the U.S. and found the back of the net. The Field House erupted in cheers. But it was too little too late. The U.S. lost 2-1. 

Even with the loss, fans like Sunny Mann say the next generation of U.S. soccer will benefit from this team's play."This bar is full of U.S. fans as I am and eventually we'll get there. It's a stepping stone," said Mann. Sacramento is leading the charge for soccer's popularity in the U.S. ESPN says only New York and San Diego had higher ratings during the last U.S. World Cup game.