If nothing else, the 2011 Women's World Cup Final has been drama-filled. Abby Wambach put the US in front at the end of the first half of extra time, but Japan kept pushing, looking for the equalizing goal in the final 15 minutes. After Christine Rampone cleared a dangerous ball off the line and out of bounds for a corner, Hope Solo stayed down for a moment, taking a knock to her knee. It was a tense moment, and the Japan corner just seemed feel dangerous.
A low, swinging ball in from the corner found Sawa, who somehow threaded the needed past the defense and Solo for the equalizer. The USA was stunned with just minutes to go and a penalty shootout on the horizon.
Alex Morgan got behind the defense just a few minutes later, just before the second half of extra time began to create another dangerous chance. Morgan was hauled-fown on the edge of the box, setting up a dangerous free kick. In addition to the free kick, Japan was given a red card, losing a central defender for the final minute of extra time and the penalty shootout.
The free kick was off the mark, but went out for a goal kick, denying the USA its best chance to avoid a shootout. It's all down to Hope Solo again as the USA and Japan head to penalty kicks tied at two.
For more on the tournament, be sure to visit SB Nation Soccer's 2011 Women's World Cup StoryStream. Stay with this StoryStream for more on Hope Solo and the United States Womens National Team.