Morgan’s late goal lifts San Diego to Challenge Cup win over Gotham

HARRISON, N.J. — Alex Morgan scored in the 88th minute and the San Diego Wave won the Challenge Cup with a 1-0 victory over Gotham FC on Friday night in the National Women’s Soccer League.

Morgan started the second half as a substitute. She broke the stalemate on a header off a corner kick from Savannah McCaskill, who joined the Wave in the offseason from rival Angel City.

“The ball came straight to me, so I knew that I couldn’t mess it up,” Morgan said.

The Challenge Cup match pitted the winner of last season’s league championship and the NWSL Shield winner. Gotham claimed the title after a 2-1 victory over the Seattle Reign, and the Wave finished with the season’s best record (11-7-4). The league’s regular season opens on Saturday.

The Wave had a good chance in the 33rd minute, but Gotham goalkeeper Cassie Miller got a hand on Jaedyn Shaw‘s shot and the ball and it popped up and away.

After winning the title, Gotham spent the offseason adding high-profile players including Crystal Dunn from the Portland Thorns, Rose Lavelle and Emily Sonnett from the Seattle Reign, and Tierna Davidson from the Red Stars. All four are U.S. national team regulars.

Among those at the match were Douglas Emhoff, the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris, and Sen. Cory Booker. Attendance was announced at 14,241.