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USA beat China 3-0
Lloyd leads U.S. women's romp in first game since Sermanni's dismissal
Apr 10, 2014; San Diego, CA, USA; USA midfielder Carli Lloyd (10) and midfielder Morgan Brian (7) celebrate following a goal during the first half against China PR at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

SAN DIEGO -- The U.S. women's national team's first encounter since Tom Sermanni's dismissal went much like his finale: a one-sided victory over China that could have -- should have -- been more lopsided.

Carli Lloyd scored fine goals in the 20th and 23rd minutes, Sydney Leroux added another just 12 seconds into the second half, and the Yanks romped to a 3-0 triumph in a friendly Thursday night in front of an announced 12,857 at Qualcomm Stadium.

It was the first time on the field for the Americans since Sermanni's stunning ouster following Sunday's 1-0 victory over China in Commerce City, Colo.

Jill Ellis, U.S. Soccer's development director, was in charge of the U.S. after flying to San Diego from her Florida home. The former head coach at UCLA and the University of Illinois, who has guided youth national teams and served as an assistant coach with the U.S. women, is in her second stint as the national team's interim coach. She posted a 5-0-2 mark between Pia Sundhage's September 2012 departure and the beginning of Sermanni's tenure at the start of 2013.

Sermanni was dismissed after the Americans' poor performance in last month's Algarve Cup in Portugal, but U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati in a media teleconference Monday said there wasn't one reason, or one result, that led to the decision.

“I think it's probably three or four things,” Gulati said. “One of those is just the evaluation of where the team is heading. ... Two, talking with people in and around the team. ... Three, the results at the Algarve Cup weren't what we hoped for. Standards for this team are very high and for the program very high. That doesn't mean that one loss or even two losses would necessitate or argue toward the change, but it's all those factors. ...

“We think we needed to go in a different direction, whether that's stylistically or whatever you want to call it.”

The U.S. extended its home unbeaten streak, dating to November 2004, to 82 games and its unbeaten streak against China, from January 2003, to 23 games.

Lloyd nearly gave the U.S. a lead just 67 seconds in with a shot deflected just past the left post, but she was on target with her next two attempts, both first-time shots, the first inside the right post from the top of the box and the next a bending ball inside the left post from 25 yards.

The first was product on Leroux, who raced past left back Wang Shanshan and sent a ball across and beyond the goalmouth for Holiday, who volleyed it back to the open Lloyd. She blistered the second after a Megan Rapinoe ball in the box was cleared.

Lloyd might have had four on her own. She came close again in the 26th, nodding a Rapinoe free kick over the crossbar while crashing into Wang, leaving her nose bloodied. Leroux was just off-target from the top of the box in first-half stoppage.

Zhang Rui forced a diving parry from Hope Solo in the 12th minute, and Li Dongna's 26-yard free kick in the 42nd sailed just past the right post.

The U.S. added to the advantage right after the second-half kickoff. A poor clearance by Wang rolled to Rapinoe just outside the Chinese box, and she quickly fed Leroux, who knocked the ball past goalkeeper Zhang Yue with a sliding shot that beat Li to the ball.

Zhang Yue made three big saves over the next 15 minutes, tipping a Rapinoe lob from the left flank over her crossbar, parrying a Leroux header onto and over the crossbar, then going to the ground to save an Abby Wambach header following a corner kick.

Center back Rachel Van Hollebeke -- née Buehler, the only San Diego-area product on the U.S. roster -- had a brief homecoming, exiting after an ankle injury on a second-minute corner kick.

Abby Wambach took one for the team

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F

USA 2 1 3

CHN 0 0 0

USA - Carli Lloyd (Lauren Holiday) 20th minute

USA - Carli Lloyd (unassisted) 23

USA - Sydney Leroux (Megan Rapinoe) 46


USA: 1-Hope Solo; 11-Ali Krieger, 16-Van Hollebeke (6-Whitney Engen, 7), 4-Becky Sauerbrunn (capt.), 25-Meghan Klingenberg, 7-Morgan Brian (20-Abby Wambach, 46), 10-Carli Lloyd, 15-Megan Rapinoe (17-Tobin Heath, 57), 9-Heather O'Reilly (23-Christen Press, 57), 12-Lauren Holiday (5-Kelley O'Hara, 64), 2-Sydney Leroux (8-Amy Rodriguez, 76)

Substitutions Not Used: 18-Alyssa Naeher

Head coach: Jill Ellis

CHN: 1-Zhang Yue; 3-Wang Lingling (7-Xu Yanlu, 34), 6-Zeng Ying, 26-Li Dongna, 30-Liu Shanshan; 14-Wang Shanshan, 23-Ren Guixin (capt.), 25-Zhang Rui (13-Gao Qi, 87), 28-Zhang Xin (16-Wan Chen, 63); 10-Li Ying, 29-Yang Li (18-Han Peng, 66)

Substitutions Not Used: 9-Lou Jiahui, 11-Huang Yini, 17-Li Xianglin, 19-Zhou Feifei, 20-Song Duan, 21-Wang Lisi, 22-Wang Yun

Head coach: Hao Wei

Stats Summary: USA / CHN

Shots: 18 / 3

Shots on Goal: 12 / 2

Saves: 1 / 3

Corner Kicks: 7 / 1

Fouls: 11 / 9

Offside: 1 / 0

Misconduct Summary:

CHN - Li Ying (caution) 59th minute


Referee: Katja Koroleva (USA)

Assistant Referee 1: Felisha Mariscal (USA)

Assistant Referee 2: Amanda Ross (USA)

Fourth Official: Alejandro Mariscal (USA)

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