WVU alums playing in World Cup

MORGANTOWN — Three West Virginia University women’s soccer All-America alums are ready to represent the Mountaineers on the sport’s biggest stage, as the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup opens its month-long tournament today in France.

Defenders Kadeisha Buchanan and Ashley Lawrence make their second career appearances with the Canadian National Team, while forward/midfielder Michaela Abam will make her career debut with the Cameroon National Team.

The 2019 tournament marks the first time three Mountaineers will compete at the FIFA Women’s World Cup. Buchanan and Lawrence were the first WVU players to compete at the tournament, as the duo helped Canada to a quarterfinal appearance in 2015. That year, Buchanan was bestowed the Hyundai Young Player Award.

“The FIFA Women’s World Cup is the Super Bowl of soccer,” Mountaineer coach Nikki Izzo-Brown said. “To have three former Mountaineer players on rosters is just amazing. Their roster spots speak highly of their character, commitment and work-rate to continue their development.”

Both teams will compete in Group E. Canada and Cameroon will kick against each other in their tournament opener on Monday, June 10, at 3 p.m. ET, at Stade de la Mosson in Montpellier, France. The match will be broadcast on FS1.

Izzo-Brown, along with her family, will be in the stands Monday.

“That’s really the cherry on top of all this excitement,” she added. “I’m ready to enjoy their moment. I’m so proud of how these young women have grown and developed. Monday really is going to be an exciting time for me.”

Cameroon continues play against Netherlands on Saturday, June 15, at 9 a.m. at Stade du Hainaut, in Valenciennes, France, with action set to air on FS1. Later that day, Canada will meet New Zealand at 3 p.m. at State des Alpes in Grenoble, France, with the match televised on FS2.

The group stage ends for both teams on Thursday, June 20. Cameroon will kick against New Zealand at Stade de la Mosson on FS1, while Canada will face Netherlands at Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims, France, on FOX. Both matches are set to start at noon.

No more than three teams from Group E will advance to the tournament’s Round of 16, with knock-out matches set for June 23-25. The quarterfinals will be played June 27-29, with the semifinals to follow July 2-4. The 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup France Final will be held Sunday, July 7, at Stade de Lyon in Lyon, France.


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