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USWNT star Becky Sauerbrunn talks Olympic memories, Wembley love

USWNT living legend Becky Sauerbrunn joined NBC’s On Her Turf podcast for a wide-ranging podcast that covering everything from being a part of Team USA at the Olympics to her decision to freeze her embryos for when her playing career ends one day.

Alex Azzi at OHT broke down that last part here and we want to put some focus on Sauerbrunn’s recollection of winning gold with the USWNT in 2012 and her self-analysis regarding her career ambitions.

Sauerbrunn cites 2012 as the No. 1 highlight of her Olympic career, which isn’t a surprise considering the Yanks did not medal in 2016 and claimed bronze this summer.

[ MORE: USWNT announces SheBelieves Cup field, dates ]

“2012 in London, we got to play at Wembley,” Sauerbrunn said. “There were 80,000 people and we had just lost to Japan in the 2011 World Cup and were facing them in a final again. We get the win 2-1 and it’s amazing and hard to put into words what it feels like to win a gold medal. ... I think Americans really love the Olympics and they love gold medalists and to be able to say that I’m a gold medalist is kinda crazy. To win it, and be in that village for a little bit of time. The village is wild, all the rumors are true.”

She said she cannot help but have visceral memories of the moments after winning gold, and said that she believes the post-win celebrations with teammates on the field may just be why she’s still playing the game altogether.

“The huddle is where it’s at,” Sauerbrunn said. “We had an epic huddle after 2022, too. The huddles at the end of important tournaments, those are always the best memories of all the tournaments. There’s such a sense of camaraderie, relief. You have so much stress that keeps building up and all of the sudden there’s this freedom and lightness. And I think about why I keep doing this to myself, fighting through injuries and putting my life on hold sometimes, and it’s for those brief moments where you feel so light. I think I’m addicted to searching for that and feeling that over and over.”

Follow @NicholasMendola