November 12, 2018 – Mount St. Mary's men's soccer standout Bilal Hassane has earned a spot on the Niger National Team for the Africa Cup of Nations Qualification Tournament.
Hassane, a native of Niamey, Niger, will be representing his home country at the qualifying tournament, hoping to help Niger secure a berth to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations. Team Niger's group includes Tunisia, Egypt, and Eswatini (formerly Swaziland). The teams play against each other in home-and-away round-robin format, with the group winner and runner-up earning qualifying bids to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
"I am very excited for Bilal to have this opportunity," said Mount Head Coach Bryan Cunningham. "It is a privilege to represent your country in international competition, and I know Bilal is relishing this experience. He has been developing over the last year and it's great to see him rewarded."
Hassane, a Mount St. Mary's team captain in 2018, anchored the defensive unit throughout the season, helping the team secure shutout efforts in a win over VMI and a draw with Fairleigh Dickinson. The junior defender's penalty kick proved to be the game winner in the victory over VMI, which was the Mount's first win of the season.