Chris Wondolowski recorded a hat trick in the first half, and his teammates matched him in the second half tonight as the United States opened CONCACAF Gold Cup with a 6-1 rout of Belize.
The game was played before a crowd of 18,724 at Jeld-Wen Field.
The United States dominated possession from the start and broke through in the 12th minute with Wondolowski scoring on the rebound of a saved header from Joe Corona.
His second goal came on a header in the 37th minute, this one assisted by Kyle Beckerman.
Belize briefly halved the advantage in the 39th minute, when Ian Gaynair found space in the box on a set piece.
However, the USA answered about a minute later on another Wondolowski header.
In the second half, the United States added goals from Stuart Holden, Michael Orozco and finally on a 75th-minute penalty kick by Landon Donovan.
The USA will return to Gold Cup action Saturday, meeting Cuba in Sandy, Utah. And therefore, Wondolowski will be missing when Seattle Sounders FC visits his club team: the San Jose Earthquakes.
In the opening match, Costa Rica defeated Cuba, 3-0.
After the game, Cuba coach Walter Benitez said he has no knowledge of
Seattle Sounders FC midfielder Osvaldo Alonso’s long-stated desire to play for the United States national team. Alonso defected from Cuba during the 2006 Gold Cup.
The competition shifts to Seattle on Thursday for a doubleheader at CenturyLink Field. Panama (1-0) and Martinique will meet at 5:30 p.m., followed by Mexico (0-1) and Canada (0-1).
76′ Donovan PK makes it 6-1.
72′ Orozco makes it 5-1.
58th minute: GOAL USA. Stuart Holden from close, assisted by Donovan. USA, 4-1.
Halftime: USA, 3-1. All US goals by Chris Wondolowski. He is the third US player to get a hat trick in Gold Cup, joining third U.S. player score three goals in a Gold Cup game, joining Brian McBride and Landon Donovan.
40-41st minute: Belize halves the US lead on a sloppily defended set piece with Ian Gaynair finishing. USA instantly answers with third goal of night by Chris Wondolowski.
37th minute: Goal again. USA again. Wondo again. 2-0. Assist Beckerman.
Through 30 minutes:We’re told 80 percent possession for USA, but still just 1-0.
13th minute: Goal USA. Chris Wondolowski cleans up rebound in front of Belize goal. USA, 1-0.
First 10 minutes: Almost fully played on US attacking end. But scoreless.
First kick: … has been struck. We’re under way.
Lineup: Here’s how the USA is starting: USA lineup: GK Rimando; D Parkhurst, Orozco-Fiscal, Goodson, Beasley; M Beckerman; Corona, Diskerud, Torres; F Donovan, Wondolowski.