On Sunday, July 7, the U.S. women’s soccer team won their fourth World Cup title, and among two of the championship players were Penn State alumni Ali Krieger and Alyssa Naeher, who were named to the team this past May.
However, it was not the first time being named world champions for either of them — the duo was a part of the 2015 squad as well.
For Alyssa Naeher, though, this World Cup was her first time as starting goalie, taking over for the soccer legend Hope Solo.
Naeher has played a huge role in the team’s success throughout the tournament. During the United States’ semi-final game against England, she saved a critical penalty kick. Had a goal been scored, it would have been a tie game, making it harder for the U.S. to advance to the finals.
After the cup, she continued to make headlines, as she was featured on Sports Illustrated’s 2019 Special Digital Commemorative Cover.
Ali Krieger, who came on the field as a sub at halftime during the finals, has made headlines not only with her stellar soccer skills, but with her engagement to teammate Ashlyn Harris back in 2018.
As a two-time All-American player, Krieger started 87 matches, scoring 11 goals with 19 assists. She was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2003 and earned All-American honors during her Junior and Senior seasons.
While having two players so successful at the world level may seem rare, Penn State women’s soccer is consistently ranked at the top among all collegiate teams, coming in at 14th on the NCAA Division 1 list, and 1st in the Big 10.
Krieger and Naeher are living proof that Penn State athletics, women’s soccer in particular, is training athletes that are capable of playing at the next level.