Nick Sakiewicz was so nervous before the end of Sunday's game that he couldn't sit down.

Maddy Evans was so excited when it was finally over that she celebrated by doing laps in her living room.

The U.S. Women's World Cup soccer team captivated millions of fans with its dramatic, 5-3 quarterfinal win over Brazil in Germany on Sunday.

So what will fans do Wednesday when the women - nine of whom have connections to Philadelphia - play France in the semifinals at noon?

"A number of us will be glued to the TV watching every minute," said Sakiewicz, the chief executive officer and operating partner of the Union, the Major League Soccer men's team that is based in Chester.

Ken Paris, the mayor of Delran - hometown of star midfielder Carli Lloyd - will be at work when the game starts, so he's hoping to schedule his lunch for most of the action. But . . .

"Depending how long it goes, I may have to take some vacation time," he said.

If Lloyd and her teammates beat France on Wednesday - they are heavy favorites - they will advance to Sunday's championship game against the winner of Japan and Sweden, which play Wednesday afternoon at 2:45. The United States will be the favorites to win that game, too.

In 2008, after Lloyd scored the game-winning goal in a 1-0 overtime win over Brazil to win the Olympic gold medal, Paris and the town held a parade.

No plans have been made for another yet, but . . .

"When I saw Japan beat [two-time defending champion] Germany [on Sunday], I said 'That opens the door for us,' " Paris said.

Wednesday's game will have to be one of the best soccer games ever played to top Sunday's thriller. The U.S. team, down to 10 players after Rachel Buehler's red card in the 65th minute, beat mighty Brazil in a penalty kick shootout after playing to a 2-2 tie in which Abby Wambach's dramatic overtime header in the 122d minute tied the score.

Former Penn State star Ali Krieger started Wambach's scoring play by intercepting a pass and getting the ball to Lloyd. With the game tied, Krieger provided the winning penalty kick.

"I was unbelievably nervous, and when Ali scored I literally did laps around my living room I was so excited," said Evans, an Abington High School graduate and soccer player entering her junior season at Penn State.

"It was probably the most exciting game I ever watched, and to have a Penn State player have such a key role in the win was absolutely incredible."

In addition to Lloyd and Krieger, seven other women on the team have local connections. Midfielder Lori Lindsey, forward Amy Rodriguez, and goalie Nicole Barnhart play for the Independence of Women's Professional Soccer.

Megan Rapinoe was with the Independence until being traded in June to the Florida-based magicJack, and Heather Mitts played for the Independence last season and is now with Atlanta. Goalie Jill Loyden is from Vineland and played at Villanova, and assistant coach Erica Walsh, the women's head coach at Penn State, is a graduate of Lower Moreland High School.

Even head coach Pia Sundhage has a link to the area. She was an assistant coach to Mark Krikorian for two seasons with the old Philadelphia Charge in 2001 and 2002 of the now-defunct Women's United Soccer Association.

This week, Krikorian is in Germany scouting for Sundhage.

"Brazil is a top team in the world and to be down a goal, down a player and equalize it in dramatic fashion is one of those sporting legends you will read about for a long time," Krikorian said in a phone interview.

Like her fans back home, Mitts, who did not see action on Sunday, will have a hard time forgetting that game.

"I've been a part of a national championship and two Olympic gold medals, and this game was the most exciting game I've ever been a part of," she said in an e-mail.

Joe Banner, president of the Eagles who has seen his share of drama over the years, said that close games are what every fan yearns for.

"Everyone loves a game that comes down to the last minute or goes into overtime," he said. "Maybe the game against France will be another cliff-hanger. But, you know, a win is a win."

Many of the Independence players left behind will be watching on TV, too, and David Halstead, the team's owner and chief executive officer, said the U.S. team has raised both national and local awareness about women's soccer.

"It is also a reminder that we have a local professional team," he said, "and some of those players are coming to Philadelphia to play."

Women's World Cup

at noon. TV: ESPN.