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Amherst Teen’s Celebration Captured by ESPN

JACOB LOPEZ SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WGGB) — The United States won its opening round World Cup match up Monday with a two to one victory over favored Ghana. And a recent graduate  of Amherst Regional High School got his 15 minutes of fame when the US scored the game winning goal, scored by John Brooks 86 minutes into the game.

Right after the score, the ESPN camera caught this young man celebrating. He’s 18 year old Jacob Lopez of Amherst. We talked by phone this afternoon. He said at the time,  he had no idea his face was being seen by soccer fans around the world, adding, “I didn’t until I found a WiFi spot and then I got all of these texts at once saying I swear I saw  you, that was you, that was you. And then I watched it on a TV inside, but I couldn’t find anything. People posted it on Facebook and everything which is a cool feeling,  you’re like every saw me and recognized me.”

Dave: “What prompted you to go to Rio.”

Jacob: There’s something about the World Cup that like for some reason, every four years, all these fights stop and everyone’s at peace and everyone is friends just while these 32 days go on. It has the power top fights it has the power to bring people together and I just wanted to check out what it’s all about .

Dave: Is it as crazy down there as it is on TV?

Jacob: It’s absolutely crazy down here. I watched the Brazil game with some Brazilian fans because I’m with a host family so they took me over to their friends and we watched the Brazil game, it’s just absolute madness. And when Croatia scored a lot of players went absolutely quiet , a hundred people or more and when Brazil scored the place was jusr shaking. When they won, we went outside and people were just dancing all over the place. Horns honking everywhere, fireworks were going off.

Jacob is living with a host family in Rio de Janeiro. Right now he says he doesn’t have tickets for Sunday’s USA-Portugal game, but is hopeful he may get one between now and then.

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