Editor’s note: this is part of an ongoing series of photo essays by photographer Jesse Louie. You can read his introductory note here.

I was in Harrison, NJ, on March 8, 2020, for the U.S. women’s national team’s 2nd stop during the #SheBelieves Cup.

The weather was picture-perfect. A sold-out crowd of 26,500 packed the Red Bull Arena stands and ushered in chants of U-S-A at every opportunistic moment to celebrate the incredible women who occupied the field. Oh yeah, and it also just happened to be #InternationalWomensDay.

On paper, it could not have been scripted any better.

But there was something different about this game. In the days leading up, the growing concerns over the spread of COVID-19 were quickly becoming a harsh reality. Questions about player safety were top of mind during Coach Vlatko Andonovski’s press conference the day before kickoff, players were advised to elbow and fist-bump instead of shake hands, a short video was presented to remind fans how to best prevent the spread of disease, and fans were notified that players would not be available for pictures and autographs post-game.

And while the impact of COVID-19 was felt in-arena, the USWNT did their best to do what they’ve always done… cancel out the noise and put on a show.

The game kicked off and started what would be a back-and-forth battle between USA and Spain. 85+ nail-biting minutes and the scoreboard flashing zeroes had fans on the edge of their seats.

And then it happened. The ‘Hollywood ending’ of all endings.

A perfectly served cross off of a Christen Press free kick connected with Julie Ertz’s head, sending the ball rocketing into the back of the net in the 87th minute.

*chef’s kiss*

Sports often offer a sense of release. An escape from whatever tumultuous reality that players, coaches, and fans are currently facing. As I sit here with sports currently on hiatus, it’s never been more clear that the sense of unity that the U.S women’s national team conveys was even more present on that night.

Taking a page out of their book, I hope that these images and words can offer you a few minutes of relief while you’re safely doing your part during this pandemic. Nobody knows when sports will resume or when this team will take the field again, but rest assured that this same energy from this specific night in March will be back and better than ever when they do.