North Carolina

Even Usain Bolt is praising this North Carolina soccer player’s World Cup performance

A 19-year-old student from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington just made her World Cup debut, and she created a splash with her performance as Jamaica’s goalkeeper in the soccer tournament.

Sydney Schneider, a New Jersey native and UNCW junior, has been a standout player as goalie for the university’s soccer team, according to UNCW Sports. But her goal tending at Jamaica’s World Cup opener brought her praise from around the world, CNN reports, even from Jamaican track star Usain Bolt.

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UNC-Wilmington student Sydney Schneider is the goalkeeper for the Jamaican women’s team at the World Cup. Twitter

Brazil won the match Sunday against Jamaica 3-0. The Brazilian team is, after all, one of the best women’s teams in the world, according to CNN. But that didn’t stop Bolt, one of the most famous track stars in recent memory, from tweeting “Yes mi Keeper” after one of her saves.

Schneider started trending on Twitter early in the game after she stopped a penalty kick, The Wilmington Star News reports.

“I believe I had a few really good saves but there were also three goals so I wish I could help my team more. With the saves, I was just doing my job and being there for my team,” Schneider said after the game, according to the Jamaica Observer.

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Jamaica goalkeeper Sydney Schneider kicks the ball after saving a penalty during the Women’s World Cup Group C soccer match between Brazil and Jamaica in Grenoble, France, Sunday, June 9, 2019. Laurent Cipriani AP

“But like the coach said we have to take these lessons and apply them for the next game, this was our first game in a big tournament but now that is behind us. Our nerves should be behind us so now we just have to go out for the next game and be ready,” Schneider said, the Observer reports.

Jamaica will play Italy on Friday.

Charles Duncan covers what’s happening right now across North and South Carolina, from breaking news to fun or interesting stories from across the region. He holds degrees from N.C. State University and Duke and lives two blocks from the ocean in Myrtle Beach.