Menomonee Falls — Knees were bouncing. popcorn was getting eaten nervously and the drinks were flowing at Trysting Place Pub during the FIFA World Cup soccer game. Though USA's 2-1 loss against Belgium was met with a collective sigh of disappointment, an overall good time was had by all.
"It's just been so exciting," said Barb Connell, who was the manager on duty during the 3 p.m. game July 1. "Everyone has been coming to watch these games here with such a contagious enthusiasm; it's brought this whole competition to life."
The local pub and grill has seen increased patronage during the tournament, Connell said, especially when the U.S. team played.
That was certainly the case as Team USA battled Belgium. A busier than usual happy hour was well attended by groups who came right from their jobs at neighboring businesses, including Kohl's and FIS.
"It's a unique thing that doesn't happen very often," said Tracey Johnson, who was there with a group of FIS employees who left work a little earlier than usual to come watch the game. "I'm not usually a fan of soccer, but seeing the United States compete at this level in such a challenging game has been fun to watch."
It was her co-worker John Elembaas' idea to get the group together to watch the game at Trysting. Forty years playing soccer himself has taught him it is definitely a challenging sport to play, which Elembaas said makes it that much more fun to watch.
His arms were among many to shoot into the air as Clint Dempsey made numerous attempts at the Belgium goal. A collective round of screaming rang through the air each time Tim Howard defended the USA goal. His record-setting number of saves was among the things that kept the folks at Trysting Place until the nail-biting finish in overtime.
"It's been a good run, especially since I don't think anyone thought (Team USA) would make it this far," Elembaas said. "We have a strong team with well-rounded players though, so I'm not surprised."
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