July 18, 2011 by staff
Abby Wambach, Bolier Bob admits he is a “football man” is not a football guy. But he wanted to be on the Back Nine Grill on Sunday for a chance to see if Pittsford native Abby Wambach could end the magical run the top teams in the United States women’s soccer in his first World Cup since 1999. About 1,100 fans jammed the restaurant, the patio and under a couple of tents outside to see, such as viewing parties are held throughout the Rochester region.
“It’s the thrill of a person from making history,” said Bolier 59-year-old, who is from Fairport. “We have to support that. It’s like the Bills (Buffalo) and the Super Bowl.”
There were hugs and pats when the extension Wambach 104th minute gave the Americans a 2-1 lead in Germany, but 25 minutes later were the groans of the U.S. could not convert his first penalty of two kicks, including a shot of Carli Lloyd skied over the bar.
“That was a Norwood,” said another fan, Todd Enright, 42, of Greece.
Of course, he meant the right of great kicker Scott Norwood misses a field goal from 47 yards that would have won the Super Bowl XXV for the Bills in 1991. Japan came back twice to force the prisons, then won 3-1 for their first World Cup, becoming the elation to deflation in the last nine holes Grill and across the United States.
Led by a fourth goal in four straight games by Wambach and a goal and assist from rookie forward Alex Morgan, Americans hoped that this was his moment. ESPN even had a camera on the back nine, which is co-owned Wambach’s brother, Matt, to show live pictures of the fans. But after riding a roller coaster of emotions throughout the game, who were stunned and in disbelief after losing the U.S.
“We played very well and obviously we are disappointed but we are still proud of (the team),” said John Malnoske, 32, a fan of Elmira and member of the supporters of American Outlaws “was on the back nine.
“Abby Wambach is very important to our community,” added fellow member Outlaws Colin Dempsey, 26, a resident of Rochester, who painted his face – beard and all – red, white and blue. “What has put Rochester on the map.”
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