Hometown: Ashburn, VA
Age: 24 (04/30/1993)
College: Penn State
The Spirit selected Whitney Church with the 30th overall pick in the 2015 NWSL College Draft. Church played in 16 games in the regular 2015 season, totaling 1364 minutes for the Spirit. In 2016, she played in 11 regular season games, 7 starts, plus all 120+ minutes of both post season matches. During her third season with the Spirit in 2017, she appeared in 22 games, totaling 1,980 minutes of playing time on the back line. She was named the NWSL Player of the Week for Week 20 of the 2017 season, after scoring the first goal of her NWSL career to help rally the Spirit to a 2-1 road victory over Sky Blue FC.
Before she entered college, Church was rated the No. 2 defender in the country and the 10th best player in the 2011 class by TopDrawerSoccer.com. She was the Virginia AA State, Regional and District Player of the year in 2010.
Church was a four year starter at Penn State University. She was a M.A.C Herman Trophy award semifinalist, a NSCAA All-American first team honoree, and a two-time Big Ten Defender of the Year.
United States National Team: Participated in three training camps for the U.S. U-17 squad in 2009.
Professional: 2017: During her third season with the Spirit in 2017, she appeared in 22 games, totaling 1,980 minutes of playing time on the back line. She was named the NWSL Player of the Week for Week 20 of the 2017 season, after scoring the first goal of her NWSL career to help rally the Spirit to a 2-1 road victory over Sky Blue FC. 2016: Played in 11 regular season games, 7 starts, totaling 610 minutes in the regular season…Played all 120+ minutes of both post season matches 2015: Selected by the Washington Spirit 30th overall in the 2015 NWSL College Draft…Played 16 games, starting 15, in the regular season plus the Spirit’s semifinal match…totaled 1364 minutes in the regular season
College: Attended Penn State University…2014: M.A.C. Hermann Trophy award semifinalist … NSCAA All-America first team honoree … First team NSCAA All-Great Lakes pick … Big Ten Defender of the Year … All-Big Ten first team selection … Started all 24 of Penn State’s matches, logging at least 90 minutes in 20 matches for a team-best 2,106 minutes … Commanded one of the top defenses in the nation, which allowed more than one goal just twice and posted nine clean sheets … Scored a goal against Ohio State (9/19) … Assisted on the game-winner against Nebraska (10/24). 2013: NSCAA All-Great Lakes second team selection … All-Big Ten second team honoree … Logged the second-most minutes on the team, starting 21 of 23 games for 1,945 minutes … Scored her first two goals of the season including the double overtime game winner in the Nittany Lions’ conference opener versus Northwestern to earn Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week honors (9/23) … Also scored a goal at Nebraska (10/27) and in the first round of the NCAA Tournament against Monmouth (11/15) … One helper, at Bucknell (9/10). 2012: NSCAA All-Great Lakes first team selection … Selected to the All-Big Ten first team … Named Big Ten Defender of the Year … Played and started in all 27 contests for the Nittany Lions … Contributed one assist to help lift the Lions over Wisconsin (9/16) … Netted two goals, including the game-winner, against Minnesota (9/30) … Tallied one goal against Michigan (11/18) in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament. 2011: Earned All-Big Ten Freshman Team honors … Made 26 appearances with 15 starts in the midfield for Penn State … Scored one goal and one assist on 14 shots … Named to Virginia Nike Soccer Classic All-Tournament Team … Assisted on game-winning goal against second-place and then-No. 22 Illinois (9/25) … Scored first collegiate goal, a game-winner versus Nebraska (10/14).
High School/Youth: Rated the No. 2 defender in the country and 10th-best player in the 2011 class by TopDrawerSoccer.com … Helped lead Broad Run High to three-straight State, Region and District Championship from 2008-10 coached by Claire Collins … Named to the 2010 NSCAA All-Region team … Earned VHSL AA State, Region and District Player of the Year in 2010 … Named to the All-State first team in 2009 and 2010 … 2010 Spring All-Met Player… All-Met honorable mention in 2009.