Christine Rampone during a training session last week. (Jeff J. Mitchell / Getty…)
GLASGOW, Scotland -- Defender Christie Rampone set a U.S. women's soccer team record by starting in her 17th Olympic match Wednesday. But that's just the start of her ironwoman numbers.
Rampone is also the first U.S. player named to four Olympic teams, and with 261 career caps, she has played in more international matches than any active female player in the world.
"When it’s all said and I'm retired and I look back to the things that I’ve accomplished, this will definitely be on the top of the list," Rampone said after the U.S. opened play in the London Games by rallying past France, 4-2.
What makes the records more special is the fact that Rampone, 37, has been able to keep going despite having two children -- making her the only mother on the team.
"It’s definitely special to be able to continue to play at this level," she said. "I've been consistently fighting and working for that position. It’s not just given to you. Especially with this team being the best in the world.
"Every training session, not only are you trying to keep your spot, but [keep] yourself on the team. So it is an accomplishment."
Rampone, the U.S. captain since 2008, went the distance in all six U.S. games in the Beijing Olympics, helping set a team record by playing more than 3,000 minutes in a calendar year. This year she went over 20,000 career minutes, something only four other American women have done.
U.S. women rally to defeat France in soccer, 4-2
Michael Phelps does not want to be U.S. flag bearer
Mariel Zagunis to be U.S. flag bearer at opening ceremony