DRESDEN, Germany — Lauren Cheney and Rachel Buehler scored in the second half, and the United States opened play at the Women's World Cup with a 2-0 victory over youthful North Korea on Tuesday.

Cheney came through in the 54th minute after putting several shots right into the hands of North Korean goalkeeper Hong Myong Hui. She took a long cross from Abby Wambach right in front of the box and nodded it past Hong to set off a raucous celebration by the two-time World Cup champions.

Buehler scored the second goal of her career in the 76th minute with a thunderous right-footed strike from about 11 yards. Hong dove, but the ball rolled beneath her outstretched hand.

This was the fourth time North Korea and the U.S. have met in group play at the Women's World Cup. This was the third American victory after a 2-2 draw four years ago.