When he was nine years old, he dreamed of traveling to the U.S. Now, at 18, Oklahoma Christian University freshman goalkeeper Anthony Trabichet has used soccer to make that dream a reality.
From Thonon-les-Bains, France, Trabichet led his club team, Thonon Evian Savoie Football Club, to a national title in 2014 and a 10-place league finish in 2017.
Trabichet earned All-State honors three years in row, from 2013 to 2015, while playing at his high school in Lycée la Versoie. In 2013 and 2014, he was named the top goalkeeper in the state and district.
During the current soccer season for the Eagles, Trabichet holds the starting goalkeeper position. He has saved 52 goals and faced 137 shots throughout the first eight games, where he stayed on the field for the entire match.
In what Sports Information Director Murray Evans called “the best game of [Trabichet’s] young collegiate career,” Trabichet saved two penalty kicks to lead the Eagles to a 2-0 win over conference rival Newman University.
After his performance against Newman, the Heartland Conference named Trabichet as defensive player of the week. He also earned the title of Division II HERO of the Week, by HeroSports.com. To win this title, Trabichet received 78 percent of the votes.
On Sunday, Trabichet played in the goal for 110 minutes—double overtime—holding the Eagles to a 1-1 draw with St. Mary’s University. This week, Trabichet looks to increase his current success as the Eagles travel to Lubbock, TX to face Lubbock Christian University Thursday at 4:30 p.m.
Q: Why did you decide to come and play soccer at Oklahoma Christian University?
“For two reasons, I always wanted to study in the U.S. Then, 10 months ago, I decided to start searching for a university which would accept me. The first coach to contact me was Coach Scott. He was interested by my potential. A few months later, he sent me a scholarship, which allowed me to study in the country I have dreamed of since I was nine.”
Q: What were your emotions during the two penalty kicks of the Newman game?
“When the referee blew the whistle for the first penalty kick, I was sure he would blow another in the second half. I was just ready. I had no pressure because if he scored, it would be only a penalty kick, which means it wouldn’t be my fault. I saved the first and for the second, I just needed to dive to the right side, because the striker had pressure this time since they had already missed once.”
Q: Have you felt a lot of pressure because you are a freshman playing against older, more experienced players?
“I have felt a lot of pressure, not because I am freshman, but because when you arrive on a new team, your coach believes in you and expects you to do a great season. I just do not want to disappoint him. Before my first training, I felt so bad. On the field, I was just afraid because if I was not good, it would not be because of the other players but because of me. It would mean that I did not do what should I do to stop the other team.”
Q: How has soccer been different here than the style you played in France?
“Soccer in the U.S. is more direct and faster. A lot of teams bet on the transition after catching the ball. In France, every team has a different style, but in general it is more positional.”
Q: This season, how do you believe the team has been performing?
“I think, every day, the team learns a lot. Some people say the potential of the team is probably better than last year. I don’t know. I was not here, but I think we can do something really great. Last Sunday, we played against the number 11 team in the country and we played better than them. I hope every game is like that.”
Q: What has been the greatest culture shock you have experienced while at Oklahoma Christian?
“The biggest difference is people are friendlier in the U.S. You can talk with everyone and they will smile or have a good discussion with you.”