July 25, 2012
UNITED KINGDOM - Former California All-American women's soccer player Alex Morgan and current Golden Bear standout Betsy Hassett kicked off competition in the Olympic games on Wednesday with Morgan competing with the United States in Scotland and Hassett playing with New Zealand in Wales.
Morgan led the United States to a 4-2 victory over France in the first Group G match of the 2012 games in Hampden Park in Scotland. Morgan scored twice as USA overcame an early two-goal deficit with four unanswered goals in the victory.
Down 2-1, Morgan tallied her first career Olympic goal in her first career Olympic match with a score in the 32nd minute to tie the match up at 2-2. Goalkeeper Hope Solo sent a kick deep into the French defensive third that landed into the possession of a streaking Morgan. The former Golden Bear standout, who graduated from Cal in the spring of 2011, lifted a left-footed shot over France goalkeeper Sarah Bouhaddi that landed in the back of the net for the goal.
U.S. midfielder Carli Lloyd gave the U.S. the lead for good with a goal in the 56th minute and Morgan extended the Americans' advantage 10 minutes later with her second score of the match. Morgan took a cross from Tobin Heath and tapped it in for the score from one yard out from just inside the far post.
Morgan's two goals gave her a team-leading 19 in 2012 for the United States during competition. The total is the sixth-most in a year of competition in U.S. history, tying April Heinrichs, Mia Hamm and Cindy Parlow.
Morgan and the United States will continue Group G play against Colombia on Saturday, July 28 in at Hampden Park Glasgow, Scotland. The match will begin at 9 a.m. (PT) and air live on NBC Sports Network.
Earlier in the day in Cardiff, Wales, Hassett's New Zealand squad opened up the Olympic games as the very first event with a 1-0 defeat to Britain inside Millennium Stadium. Britain's Stephanie Houghton scored off a free kick in the 64th minute to provide the difference in the match
Hassett, who enters her senior season with the Bears this fall, entered the match in the 60th minute and played the final 30 minutes for the Football Ferns. Wednesday's match was the first career Olympic competition for Hassett.
Hassett and her New Zealand squad return to Millennium Stadium for their next match on Saturday, July 28 against Brazil at 6:30 a.m. (PT).