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Sand Trap Sports Bar to Open Early for U.S. Women's World Cup Semifinal

Coverage of the U.S.-France match in Germany is scheduled to start around breakfast time Wednesday in the San Gorgonio Pass area. Sand Trap owner Ben Cloninger said he plans to open his establishment on Oak Valley Parkway at 8 a.m.

The Sand Trap Sports Bar and Grill in Beaumont will open early Wednesday to show live coverage of the U.S.-France semifinal of the 2011 Women's World Cup from Germany.

Sand Trap owner Ben Cloninger said he plans to open doors at 8 a.m., when ESPN coverage from Moenchengladbach is expected to begin.

"We're planning on it," Cloninger said in a phone interview Tuesday morning. "We'll be open at eight."

The Sand Trap is at 892 W. Oak Valley Parkway, Suite A.

On Sunday, the U.S. women were down to 10 players and trailing 2-1 to Brazil in the 122nd minute - injury time of extra time - when midfielder Megan Rapinoe lofted a cross that forward Abby Wambach headed in to score in the dying moments of elimination.

The U.S. women were perfect in the ensuing penalty shootout, goalkeeper Hope Solo blocked one of Brazil's spot kicks, and the Americans advanced 2-2 (5-3 pks) to the semifinal against France.

It was one of the most dramatic comebacks in World Cup history - men's or women's.

U.S. team players from Southern California include forwards Alex Morgan of Diamond Bar, Amy Rodriguez of Lake Forest, and midfielder Shannon Boxx of Redondo Beach. Rapinoe is from Redding.

Defender Rachel Buehler of Del Mar received a red card Sunday for fouling Brazil forward Marta in the penalty area, and must sit out Wednesday's semifinal.

The U.S. plays France on Wednesday for a chance to advance to the 2011 World Cup final Sunday in Frankfurt. The other semifinal, Sweden vs. Japan, is scheduled to start before noon Wednesday.

The U.S. won two of the first three Women's World Cups, in 1991 and 1999, with a different generation of players. Hosts Germany won the last two, in 2003 and 2007, but were eliminated Saturday by Japan.

For more information about the Sand Trap, call (951) 922-4949 or visit http://www.thesandtrapsportsbar.com/.

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