PUEBLO — It didn't matter that they were cheering from more than 5,000 miles away.
The Pugh family, gathered with friends at the First & Main Bar & Grill in Pueblo, made it feel like they were actually at the 2019 Women's World Cup Final in France, where the U.S. Women's National Team (USWNT) won its 4th World Cup in a 2-0 win over the Netherlands Sunday.
That energy was heartfelt, too, as the family cheered on one of their own. Mallory Pugh, a Colorado native, is a forward on the team making her first World Cup appearance.
When asked how talented Pugh is at soccer, her younger cousin Emry Prigmore put it as only he could.
"One out of 100, I would say a million," Prigmore said, noting Pugh is his favorite cousin.
Kennedy Pugh, Mallory's uncle, led most of the cheering, but admitted he was nervous heading into the match.
"I couldn't eat this morning. I couldn't sleep last night. You know, I was just so excited for the team," he said.
The entire bar was on the edge of its seat for much of the match and historic moment, echoing the bar with emotion on close chances before erupting in cheer when Megan Rapinoe and Rose Lavelle found the back of the net.
Pugh played in three of the team's seven World Cup matches and scored a goal in the 13-0 win over Thailand, but Manager Jill Ellis kept her out of the lineup for the World Cup Final.
Still, her uncle, Kennedy said he knows her time on the national stage is only getting started.
"We're just thrilled for her to be able to be a part of the team, and we just hope that she keeps it going and doesn't get injured and has plenty more Women's World Cup games to win," Pugh said.