Carli Lloyd celebrates the first of her five goals with Mallory Pugh. (David Richard-USA TODAY Sports)
Carli Lloyd scored early and often as the U.S. women’s national team routed Paraguay in an international friendly in Cleveland, Ohio Thursday night.
The Delran, N.J. native struck twice in the opening six minutes en route to a record-tying five-goal performance to power the Americans to a 9-0 triumph before 14,117 spectators at FirstEnergy Stadium.
The result extended the USA’s home unbeaten streak to 59 games (54-0-5).
Lloyd, who participated in the first of four games in what is her national team farewell tour, tied nine USWNT players who have scored five goals in match. It also was Lloyd’s 24th multi-goal game.
“That was fun,” Lloyd said. “I am just trying to savor it. I want time to go a little bit slower because I have three games left.”
Lloyd, 39, moved up to third on the U.S. all-time scoring list. She has 133 career international goals, passing Kristine Lilly (130 goals), and is behind only Mia Hamm (158) and Abby Wambach (184). Lloyd, who announced her retirement from international soccer following the USA’s October friendlies, became the ninth player in USWNT history to score five goals in a game.
“I think the older you get, the smarter you get,” Lloyd said. “I didn’t want to lose the ball. Having fun out there, that’s what it was all about tonight.
Lloyd ripped the nets in the third and sixth minute and the USA never looked back.
Andi Sullivan tallied the first of brace in the 25th minute and Lynn Williams made it 4-0 on the half hour.
Lloyd then scored quickly again, tallying in the 34th and 38th minutes as the U.S. entered halftime with a 6-0 advantage.
Sullivan added her second four minutes into the second half before Lloyd hit for No. 5 in the 61st minute.
Tobin Heath closed out the scoring in the 86th minute.