For once, New Jersey has something to be proud of. The Garden State can proudly boast that four of its own were a part of the U.S. women’s national team that won the World Cup last week, among them the star of the final game against Japan — Carli Lloyd, who scored three goals.
Lloyd, who attended Rutgers University, is originally from Delran and now resides in Mt. Laurel. Lloyd has always been the most well-known member of the team from New Jersey.
Entering this year, she was already the all-time leading scorer (with 61 goals) for a player who has played exclusively as a midfielder. And she has always seemed to shine in the biggest moments. In addition to the three goals in the World Cup finale, Lloyd also scored both of the team’s goals in the Gold Medal winning game against Japan in the 2012 London Olympics.
New Jersey can be proud of more than just Lloyd, though. We can celebrate midfielder Tobin Heath, from Basking Ridge, who also scored a goal in the World Cup final game. Point Pleasant’s Christine Rampone — a defender who has played in five World Cups for the U.S. — and Heather O’Reilly, a midfielder from East Brunswick, were also big participants for the team.
The victory by the women’s soccer team was something we should all be proud of, and it gives us New Jerseyans a feather to put in our collective cap. Not everything about our state is bad; we make significant contributions to our country on a daily basis.
While the World Cup is just a sporting event, it’s something that bands our country together. It’s something that people watch all around the world, whether they are avid fans of soccer or have never watched the sport before.
The victory by the women’s national team gives all of us a great sense of pride in our country, and it’s thanks in large part to four of the Garden State’s own.