Morning Sports Update

Alyssa Naeher cited Bill Belichick in explaining how the U.S. team can overcome losing Olympic opener

"We're on to New Zealand."

Alyssa Naeher
Alyssa Naeher, the United States goalkeeper, reacts after Sweden score in the group stage game. Doug Mills/The New York Times

The Red Sox defeated the Blue Jays 7-4 on Wednesday. Boston smashed five home runs to complete the two-game sweep of Toronto.

Also on Wednesday, the Revolution stayed atop the Eastern Conference with a 5-0 dismantling of Inter Miami.

And the Seattle Kraken selected now-former Bruins defenseman Jeremy Lauzon as one of the team’s picks in the expansion draft.

On Friday, the Opening Ceremony for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics gets underway at 6:55 a.m. ET.

Alyssa Naeher cites Bill Belichick: Riding a 44-game unbeaten run into the Olympics, the U.S. women’s soccer team got off to a disastrous start in Tokyo on Wednesday morning, losing to Sweden 3-0 in the group stage opener.

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Of course, the Americans can still qualify for the knockout round, but it requires results in the other two group stage games against New Zealand (Saturday at 7:30 a.m. ET) and Australia (Tuesday at 4 a.m. ET).

How can the U.S. team shake off a poor performance? According to goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher — a New England native — it’s by citing a familiar mantra.

“To channel, you know, my inner Bill Belichick, we’re on to New Zealand,” said Naeher in a recent interview. “Our focus now is forward, and we’ve got another big match in less than 48 hours against New Zealand.”

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“All of our focus shifts to getting those three points on Saturday,” Naeher concluded.

Naeher was the U.S. women’s goalkeeper in the victorious run to the 2019 World Cup, the team’s second consecutive win in the tournament. She’s also a Patriots fan.

Belichick, whose famous phrase became popular following a 2014 loss to the Chiefs, was motivated by similar factors as Naeher in continually emphasizing the importance of “turning the page.”

Trivia: Bill Belichick’s now famous “We’re on to Cincinnati” quote became famous in a year when the Patriots went on to win the Super Bowl. Which team did New England beat to win the title that season?

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(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: They were the defending Super Bowl champions.

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On this day: In 1997, Atlanta pitcher Greg Maddux threw a complete game using just 76 pitches in a 4-1 win over the Cubs.

Daily highlight: Robbie Kristo scored from midfield in North Carolina FC’s 4-0 win over the Richmond Kickers.

Trivia answer: Seattle Seahawks

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