A late penalty by USA fly half Kimber Rozier proved the difference as Wales fell to a 7-10 defeat in their 2014 World Cup warm-up match at Pandy Park in Cross Keys.
Both sides scored one converted try apiece with winger Vanesha McGee ploughing over for USA and No 8 Sioned Harries replying in the second half for Wales.
Both sides ignored the wind and rain to play an open game of rugby with McGee and full back Akilaini Baravilala a constant threat with ball in hand for USA while Dyddgu Hywel and Laurie Harries featured regularly in counter attacks for Wales.
The teams were deadlocked until the 39th minute when USA ran the ball right and McGee dived over to score a well-executed try despite the best efforts of Harries and Hywel in defence. Rozier landed an excellent conversion to give the Americans a hard fought 7-0 lead at the interval.
Wales got back in to the game in the early stages of the second half through their forwards with Caryl Thomas and Catrin Edwards willing workhorses.
Wales got back on level terms in the 60th minute after holding onto possession for several phases. The ball was spread wide where Sioned Harries was lurking with intent and the speedy No 8 showed a clean pair of heels as she cut back against the grain to score under the posts. Laurie Harries added the extras to bring the scores level at 7-7.
Wales continued to attack but were guilty of coughing up possession at crucial times. USA made them pay by bursting downfield to set up Rozier for a penalty after Welsh forwards were penalised for coming in at the side of a ruck. The fly half had no trouble striking the ball between the uprights to edge her side back in front.
Wales finished the match in the ascendency but couldn't find a way through as USA held out for a gritty win.
Despite the narrow defeat, Wales Women's head coach Rhys Edwards was satisfied with his team's efforts.
"Going into the game we didn't know much about them but we knew it was going to be a tough game, especially as they are ranked in the top five teams of the world. The scoreboard doesn't really reflect that so I'm pretty pleased with the performance.
"We created some chances against one of the best teams in the world - the difference being when they get a chance they score, we don't. We take two, three, four or five times to get on the score board. We've got to show some composure and a bit of belief but we are certainly knocking on the door.
"We are improving and we showed that today. As we look ahead to the World Cup, we have another game against Ireland and there is no reason why we can't kick on from there and challenge in France."
Despite drawing with Ireland in the opening round of the RBS 6 Nations, Wales defence coach Shaun Edwards believes the championship 'is still in our hands' as he prepares his side to face Scotland at Principality Stadium tomorrow.
We look back at Ireland and forward to Scotland in this week's Principality Welsh Rugby Union Podcast. We hear from Warren Gatland, Sam Warburton and Bradley Davies, while forwards coach Robin McBryde reflects on the achievments of son Billy, selected on the bench for Wales U20 this week. Jason Strange, Harrison Keddie and Harri Millard discuss the impressive Wales U20 performance, while Sian Williams becomes the first full-time professional Welsh women's rugby player - we hear from her, WRU head of rugby performance Geraint John and RAF Air Commodore Dai Williams.
Young fly half Robyn Wilkins has been given the keys to No 10 and is looking forward to guiding the backline from the pivotal fly half position as Wales Women begin their Six Nations campaign against defending champions, Ireland at Donnybrook this afternoon.
The Wales Women's team headed to Dare Valley Country Park on a team bonding exercise as the entire squad got together for the very first time in preparation for this season's Six Nations championship which kicks off on Saturday with a clash against defending champions Ireland, in Donnybrook.
Wales Head Coach Warren Gatland discusses his team selection for the opening round of the RBS 6 Nations where he leads his side against Ireland, on Sunday. As WRU TV's Luke Brodley discovers, Gatland is fully aware of the challenges the defending champions pose
WRUTV caught up with Wales Women captain Rachel Taylor at the RBS 6 Nations launch and how a good crowd really helps boost the girls performance. Tickets for all three Women's home games at The Gnoll, Neath are available from www.wru.wales/tickets
We hear about the Wales squads getting ready for the Six Nations in this week's Principality Welsh Rugby Union Podcast. Wales coach Warren Gatland and backs coach Rob Howley talk about their Six Nations squad, while lock Alun Wyn Jones explains why he has signed a National Dual Contract. Wales U20 head coach Jason Strange and captain Tom Phillips discuss their new squad, while WRU national women's rugby manager Caroline Spanton looks at the state of the game in Wales.
The Wales Women's rugby squad was announced this week, we hear all about it on the Principality Welsh Rugby Union Podcast. WRU group chief executive Martyn Phillips talks about the importance of the women's game in Wales, coach Rhys Edwards looks at the squad while captain Rachel Taylor looks forward to leading them. Wales and Ospreys prop Aaron Jarvis looks forward to their crucial European clash against Clermont.
The Wales Sevens squad had some spare time to kill while waiting for a training session in Dubai, so decided to play: Let's head a football into a rubbish bin. It seemed such a simple idea at the time....
A week after most people thought he should have been crowned the RBS 6 Nations Man of the Match in Dublin, Jamie Roberts picked up the top award after another power-packed performance in Wales' 27-23 win over Scotland.
Wales Sevens may have picked up their first silverware of a demanding HSBC Sevens World Series campaign in Sydney but head coach Gareth Williams is already demanding improvement from his young side for the next two legs next month.
He may have seen his side run in four tries in a big opening win over the Irish in Dublin, but Wales Under 20 head coach Jason Strange has installed the Scots as favourites for their round two clash in Colwyn Bay this evening (kick-off 6.30pm).
We hear about the end of the Rugby World Cup on this week's Principality Welsh Rugby Union Podcast. Wales coach Warren Gatland, captain Sam Warburton and wing George North give their views, while Dragons coach Lyn Jones looks forward. We also hear from Wales U18s and 20s coach Geraint Thomas and Wales Sevens coach Gareth Williams.
Gemma Rowland will go into her second Six Nations campaign this week with her heart set on helping the Welsh women's rugby team qualify for the 2017 World Cup - and when the 26-year-old Army Captain takes aim she rarely misses the target.
Pupils from Ysgol Castell Nedd and Ysgol y Dderwen will be the first to compete for Welsh Schools titles at the Millennium Stadium this season when they run onto the hallowed turf of the Millennium Stadium tomorrow (Wednesday).