In continued preparation for the start of the 2013 season, the Washington Spirit Reserves have signed three returning players from their previous incarnation D.C. United Women. Midfielder Andi Sullivan, goalkeeper Didi Haracic, and forward Ashley Herndon will rejoin the revamped W-League squad which now falls under the Washington Spirit Reserve team banner.
Bound for Stanford this coming fall, U.S. U-17 Women’s National Team member Sullivan is expected to bring an attacking flair into the Spirit Reserves midfield. The Lorton, Virginia native is currently ranked as the Number 1 overall recruit for the class of 2014 on topdrawersoccer.com’s Top 150 list., and while rostered last summer, was only able to participate in three games due to the U-17 World Cup.
Also returning to Washington, Loyola University goalkeeper Haracic joins the W-league team for her third summer in a row and has already established herself as a mainstay in the net. Haracic surrendered only five goals in eight games for D.C. United Women in 2012 and the Spirit Reserves veteran promises to be a force to contend with throughout the season.
Rounding out the returnees, the James Madison University bound Herndon will suit up in a familiar role, although trading the black and red colors for the Spirit red and white. Herndon finished last season with five goals and three assists, tripling her 2011 points total. The crafty wing brings flair and speed to already potent Washington attack.
All three signees played under current NWSL pro Washington Spirit head coach Mike Jorden the previous year, but were ineligible for training camp due to their NCAA status. The signing of the trio affords Jorden the opportunity to keep them in the Spirit system as true amateurs, retaining their college eligibility.
“Andi brings plenty of energy, tenacity and creativity back to the Spirit this summer and Ashley is a very skillful and exciting attacking player that will give us superb options up front,” commented new Reserves head coach Mark Parsons, who lead the club’s Super-20 team to the league final last season, “Adding to that, Didi brings back great ability and leadership and will be an important player on and off the field.”
“The signings show our exciting potential this summer as all three bring huge amounts of ability, character and love for the game,” concluded Parsons.
The Spirit Reserves tryouts continue this weekend on Saturday April 20th at the Maryland Soccerplex in Boyds, Maryland. Tryouts are slated to run from 4:00PM to 6:00PM on Soccerplex Field #14. Interested players must register prior to attending at washingtonspirit.com.
The Washington Spirit Reserves face a challenging schedule of opponents in the Northeast Division of the Eastern Conference for the season, which include the 2012 playoff contenders Long Island Rough Riders and Virginia Beach Piranhas.
The Spirit Reserves will kick off their home season Saturday May 11th against the New York Magic. Match time is set for 4:00 PM at the Maryland SoccerPlex and is the first in a doubleheader with their professional club mates. The Washington Spirit professional side face the Boston Breakers at 7:00PM. Tickets available here.