The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

August 14, 2013

Altidore's hat trick leads US to 4-3 win vs Bosnia

— Jozy Altidore had a hat trick to lead an impressive comeback Wednesday, with the U.S. scoring all of its goals in the second half to beat Bosnia-Herzegovina 4-3 in Sarajevo and extend its record winning streak to 12 games.

Altidore has scored in five straight games, a first for a U.S. player, and also had an assist on Eddie Johnson's goal. It was the first time the U.S. has come back to win a game in Europe, and gives the Americans two victories over top-15 teams during their winning streak after a 4-3 victory over No. 2 Germany on June 2 that started the run.

"It feels great," Altidore said. "More than anything, as a team, we win another game. Our confidence is high."

Edin Dzeko scored his second goal in the 90th minute. But it wasn't enough for the 13th-ranked Dragons, who lost for the first time in nine games.

The U.S. winning streak, the longest currently in the world, appeared to be jeopardy after the Americans fell behind 2-0 before halftime. But Altidore set up Johnson's goal in the 55th minute, controlling a long chip shot from Michael Bradley with a slight touch of his left foot. The ball fell right at Johnson's feet and, with goalkeeper Asmir Begovic out of the net to block Altidore, Johnson neatly tapped the ball into the empty net to cut Bosnia's lead to 2-1.

Four minutes later, Altidore evened things up.

Fabian Johnson slalomed through a crowd of Bosnian defenders, chipping the ball to Altidore. He took one shot and buried a left-footed shot from 16 yards that the diving Begovic had no chance to stop. It was Altidore's fifth goal in as many games, breaking the previous mark he'd shared with Johnson, William Looby, Eric Wynalda, Brian McBride and Landon Donovan.

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