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The Washington Spirit selected four of the brightest stars in NCAA women’s soccer in the National Women’s Soccer League’s inaugural draft on Friday morning at the Indiana Convention Center, bolstering our club’s attack with several prolific goalscorers and further adding to the local flavor of our growing roster with three draftees from the national capital region.
With the overall second pick, we selected Florida State striker Tiffany McCarty. A native of Laurel, Md., McCarty is fresh off an excellent senior season with the Seminoles where she scored 17 goals and five assists in 24 starts, leading FSU into the semifinals of the NCAA tournament. The fast, powerful frontrunner was a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy in 2009 and 2011 and leaves Tallahassee with a whopping 63 career goals and 24 assists in 98 games.
“I’m really excited,” McCarty told assembled media just minutes after her selection. “The Spirit will be a very good team. My family is also excited that I’m going back home, and I know a lot of people back home in Maryland. I feel like it will be a very good experience for me.”
Next, we took another prolific scorer with their second-round selection, picking University of Virginia striker Caroline Miller with the 10th overall pick. Miller notched 20 goals and seven assists for the Cavaliers in 2012, earning MAC Hermann Trophy Finalist, NSCAA First Team All-American, ACC Offensive Player of the Year and All-ACC honors, among many others. The Rockville, Md. product racked up 45 goals and 19 assists over four years in Charlottesville.
We stayed local next by selecting University of Florida midfielder Holly King in the third round, securing another highly-decorated NCAA standout with local ties. King grew up in Ashburn, Va. before joining Gators coach Becky Burleigh’s program and logging 12 goals, nine assists and more than 7,000 minutes of play over her four-year college career. This past season was her most successful yet, as she garnered SEC All-America, SEC Defensive Player of the Year and All-SEC first team laurels after playing for D.C. United Women (now “Washington Spirit Reserves” over the summer.
We concluded our first draft with the acquisition of Dayton standout Colleen Williams in the fourth round. Another forward with a keen eye for goal, the Titusville, N.J. native bagged 58 strikes and set up 36 more during her time with the Flyers.
All told, today’s draft selections netted the Spirit 178 career collegiate goals, substantially enhancing the attacking side of Jorden’s roster plans.
“It’s hard to imagine how this draft could’ve gone any better for our club,” said Spirit owner Bill Lynch. “We’ve had Tiffany in our sights from the very beginning of this process, and were shocked and delighted that Caroline was still available when the time came to make our second selection. We expect Holly and Colleen to contribute right away and are delighted to welcome all four to the Spirit.”
The team will now continue to build their roster with free-agent signings as the club continues to prepare for the kickoff of NWSL’s inaugural season in April. Washington received U.S. Women’s National Team stars Ashlyn Harris, Ali Krieger and Lori Lindsey, Canadian internationals Robyn Gayle and Diana Matheson and Mexican internationals Alin Garciamendez and Guadalupe Worbis via allocation earlier this month.
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Season tickets for inaugural NWSL season at the Maryland SoccerPlex are on sale now at tickets.washingtonspirit.com, with the most exclusive VIP reserved seating sections nearly sold out.