Panama eliminates Mexico from the World Cup with 2-0 win

CARY, N.C. (AP) — Karla Riley and Lineth Cedeno scored and Panama upset Mexico 2-0 ON Wednesday in their final group stage game at the CONCACAF women’s World Cup qualifying tournament.

The loss means that Mexico is eliminated from the knockout round and won’t be a part of the field at next year’s World Cup in France. Panama, ranked No. 66th in the world, secured a spot in the semifinals on Sunday in Frisco, Texas.

After a scoreless first half, Riley scored in the 47th minute. Cedeno added her goal in the 85th, giving Panama a shot at going to its first-ever World Cup. Mexico was ranked No. 24 in the world.

Group A includes the defending World Cup champion United States, which faced Trinidad and Tobago in the late game Wednesday. Group B, which includes Canada, wraps up its stage on Thursday in Edinburg, Texas.

The top two finishers in each group advance to play in the semifinals. The U.S. had already secured a spot.

The top three finishers in the tournament earn spots in the Women’s World Cup in France next summer. The fourth-place finisher goes to a playoff against Argentina for a berth.