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UMFK Bengal soccer players earn national recognition

October 17, 2003

NR03157

Two University of Maine at Fort Kent Bengal soccer players have earned national "player of the week" honors by the United States Collegiate Athletic Association.

Megan Foreman, a senior from Fort Kent enrolled in the secondary education program, and Juan Murphy, a second-year forestry student from Buenos Aires, Argentina were named the top women and men's soccer players in the country out of athletes representing all schools competing in the association.

The USCAA is an organization of 52 two and four-year colleges and universities from throughout the country, including several in Maine, that participate in intercollegiate athletic competition, including soccer.

At UMFK, the national recognition is welcome news to the campus community.

"We are very pleased with the announcing of these two athletes receiving USCAA national recognition," said Jim Graffam, director of athletics. "These awards not only highlight the hard work and effort Megan and Juan have put forth, they also showcase those same traits within our soccer programs. Through hard work and effort women"s coach Eric Werntgen and men's coach Melik Khoury have gotten their programs recognized on the National level, something totally unthought-of three years ago. It's a great day to be a Bengal."

Foreman and Murphy have both been instrumental to their respective team's success this season.

On the women's team, Foreman plays midfield, and so far this season has scored seven goals and four assists. The team has a record of four wins and five losses.

Prior to the week she was honored Foreman scored three goals and had two assists in a 2-0 weekend for the Lady Bengals. On Saturday, September 20 she scored two goals and had two assists in UMFK's 9-3 victory over St. Joseph's College of Vermont. Then on Sunday, September 21 she scored the game winning goal from 25 yards out in overtime to give UMFK a 2-1 victory over Lyndon State. Foreman also controlled play in the center midfield position in both games.

For the men, Murphy also plays midfield, and to date leads the team with nine goals and five assists. The Bengal men's team has won six games and lost two this season.

In the week for which Murphy was recognized, he scored four goals and had two assists in a 2-0 weekend for the Bengals. On Saturday, September 27 he scored on a free kick to tie the score at 1-1 just before halftime. He would add another goal and two assists in the Bengal's 7-1 win over the University of Maine at Presque Isle. On Sunday, September 28 he scored the first of his two goals on a free kick from 25 yards out just five minutes into the game as UMFK toppled St. Joseph's College of Maine 3-0.

In addition to Murphy, two other UMFK men's soccer players have recently earned recognition for their efforts on the field.

Aadil Mootassem, a senior business major from Tangiers, Morocco, and Charles Bard, a junior E-commerce major from Fort Kent were named to separate honors in the Sunrise Athletic Conference, the New England-based association of schools that compete in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics to which UMFK belongs.

Mootassem was named "Offensive Player of the Week", after he scored both goals in the Bengal's 2-0 win over St. Joseph's College of Maine on October 13.

Bard was named conference "Defensive Player of the Week", after his solid play in both the right back and sweeper positions in the same contest against St. Joseph's. He prevented a goal late in the second half to preserve the team's shutout.