Lloyd’s “fastest” hat trick seals World Cup for USA

(In case you missed it on KSDK)…

Jul 5, 2015; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; United States midfielder Carli Lloyd (10) reacts after scoring a goal against Japan in the first half of the final of the FIFA 2015 Women's World Cup at BC Place Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

If you didn’t know who Carli Lloyd was before Sunday evening, there’s a good chance you will know her name Monday morning. Yesterday, I had no idea who Lloyd was and then I turned the television on and saw her devastate Japan in the FIFA World Cup final. Suddenly, everyone will know Lloyd’s name. She set a World Cup record for fastest hat trick(netting #3 right past the 15 minute mark), and I am sure it will not be broken for a long time. It’s one thing for a team to score 4 quick goals in the World Cup game, but quite a historical event to see it done by one player.

When she isn’t doing amazing things on an international stage, the midfielder, a native of Delran Township, New Jesery, has played soccer for nine different teams, the latest being the Houston Dash. This isn’t the first time she has achieved national glory, as she was named, along with Tim Howard, The U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year in 2008. Lloyd scored her first World Cup goal in 2011 against Columbia and netted an assist and a successful penalty kick against Brazil yet missed a pivotal penalty kick against Japan that ended up giving the USA team the silver medal. One can say this beatdown of Japan brings a little retribution not only to the team but to Lloyd herself.

Lloyd is also an Olympic hero as well, putting on a show in the 2012 Summer Olympics. She scored four goals in the tournament, including both USA goals against Japan in the Gold Medal game. Two of the four goals were game winning goals. Clutch goals is what Lloyd does on a regular basis.

Before the Japan game this summer, Lloyd had game winning goals in the last two games leading up to this Final. Again, if you didn’t know her name before this weekend, you will have it memorized tonight.

Lloyd had two goals inside five minutes Sunday evening. She got her third goal by chipping a shot from midfield that made its way over the Japan goalkeeper as the clock ticked past 15 minutes. Lloyd may go to sleep and tie her shoes like everyone else on this planet, but when it comes to scoring goals in World Cup games, Carli is a special kind of golden. Look her up. Buy a shirt with her name on it. Soccer fan or not, this is fun.

I’m not the world’s biggest soccer fan, but the World Cup draws a person in quick. I can tell myself all day I won’t watch but when it comes on, I am glued. That’s the power of these games.

Japan didn’t lose without putting up a fight, scoring 2 goals to cut the lead to 4-2 before the United States’ Tobin Heath knocked in the fifth score and final score.

Carli Lloyd never gave the opposing country a shot. Before the game was 16 minutes old, she made the day her own. On July 16th, she turns 33 years old. I am sure this birthday will be a lot different than the previous 32.

When you think about it, Lloyd will only inspire thousands of American girls to take up the sport of soccer. They will play soccer from age 5 up through high school and try to make it pro. Everyone will want to be like Carli before too long.

Soccer brings people together in unusual ways. There are hardcore fans and casual observers like myself. In a way, soccer is a sport that brings completely different people together for a game. It hooks different cultures across the world. When it ends, ordinary returns. While it’s on, life is anything but for millions.

Tomorrow morning, Carli Lloyd will be the talk of not only Delran Township, New Jersey but the face shown across the country and the world. That is the power of the FIFA World Cup.

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