Former University of Maine Fort Kent Soccer Player Kimika Forbes Shines on International Stage

Former University of Maine Fort Kent Soccer Player Kimika Forbes Shines on International Stage

[CONCACAF WOMEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP] For one evening, Kimika Forbes, who attended tiny Maine-Fort Kent, was a fortress, holding off an onslaught from the U.S. women's national team to limit the heavily favored Americans to a 1-0 win over Trinidad & Tobago in their opening game at the 2014 Concacaf Women's Championship in Kansas City, Kansas.

The Americans came into the game with a record of nine wins in nine group-stage matches in Concacaf play, none smaller than 3-0, and a scoring margin of 67-0, but it could only manage a single goal by Abby Wambach, her 171st international goal, in the 54th minute on a header after Alex Morgan eluded Forbes in the penalty area.

Trinidad & Tobago put nine and 10 defenders behind the ball, and any time the USA broke through Forbes was otherwise there to stop the hosts. The USA finished with a 29-7 edge in shots, but Forbes made nine saves to keep the game close.

Maine-Fort Kent, known for its biathlon program, is so small it left the NAIA to join the USCAA, where it won the national title in 2013, Forbes' last season with the Bengals. After spending the summer in the WPSL with the Boston Breakers Reserves, she returned to UMFK to continue her studies, but she needed to get her former coach to ask permission of her professors to join T&T.

Funding problems forced the Soca Princesses, coached by AmericanRandy Waldrum, to show up for training for the CFU Cup in Houston with what the Houston Dash coach described as "nine soccer balls and a plastic garbage bag that carried a few pennies" and later return to the United States for the Concacaf Women's Championship with only $500 because funding had not been yet approved from the T&T sports ministry.

Perhaps Forbes' best save came in the 52nd minute when she stopped Wambach on a breakaway and Megan Rapinoe hit the rebound over the goal. In stoppage time, Forbes again came up big one-on-one, stopping sub Sydney Leroux with her left leg.

After Wednesday's performance, Waldrum said he was ready to welcome Forbes to spring training for the Dash's second season in the NWSL.

-- In Wednesday's earlier match, shorthanded Haiti defeated Guatemala, 1-0, as Lindsey Zullo scored the game's only goal.

CROWD COUNT. The opening doubleheader drew an embarrassingly small crowd of 3,621 fans at Sporting Park.  Action continues in the Concacaf Women’s Championship Thursday at Sporting Park with Jamaica-Martinique and Mexico-Costa Rica.


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