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Women's World Cup 2011: USA Drops Final to Japan In Shootout

The United States women's soccer team had victory in its sight twice, but couldn't close the deal, battling Japan to a 2-2 draw before falling in penalty kicks.  Japan stunned the United States by coming from behind twice to tie the game: once in the second half and again in extra time to force the shootout.

Aya Miyama answered Abby Wambach's extra-time goal for the U.S. with three minutes to go in the second extra period and goalkeeper Ayumi Kaihori saved penalties from Shannon Boxx and Tobin Heath, and Carli Lloyd missed her attempt in the shootout.

USA goalkeeper Hope Solo, fighting through injuries, allowed three of four penalty kicks.  The final -- and game-winner -- was to Saki Kumagai, setting off a raucous celebration on the field among the Japanese players as well as back at home.  For a nation that has suffered through so much heartbreak, they can now bask in this incredible victory over the favored Americans.

If you missed any of the action, you can see a replay of the game Sunday night at 7pm EST.