Women's Soccer USA

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January 16, 2009

WPSL dominates first 2 rounds of 2009 WPS draft

After today's WPS Draft - which was held in conjunction with the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Convention at America's Center Convention Complex in St. Louis, MO - many WPSL players can pursue that professional dream once again, as 29 former & current standouts were selected by the seven WPS teams in a 10-round format. On top of that fact, nine of the first 11 picks in the 2009 WPS Draft have ties with the WPSL.
"It is a great day for the WPSL but more so for the sport of women's soccer," said League Commissioner Jerry Zanelli, who is also the owner of the WPSL's California Storm & Director of Player Development for F.C. Gold Pride (WPS). "To have nine of the first 11 picks in today's WPS Draft connected to our league is truly gratifying, but as a whole, no where close to the satisfaction when it comes to the players themselves. This is all for them and what our league is truly about - developing players for the next level."
West Coast F.C.'s Amy Rodriguez - who signed with the team prior to the 2008 season but was called up to the gold-medal winning U.S. Women's National Team for the Olympic Games this past summer after an injury to star forward Abby Wambach - was selected 1st overall by the Boston Breakers. After that, former Elk Grove Pride star & All-WPSL selection Megan Rapinoe (Univ. of Portland) went to the Chicago Red Stars with the second overall selection.
The Long Island Fury of the East Conference were honored with two selections in the First Round, as U-23 USWNT star & UCLA's Hermann Trophy Finalist Christina DiMartino (3rd overall, F.C Gold Pride) and Allie Long (7th overall, Washington) of the 2008 College Cup Champion Univ. of North Carolina Tarheels will now take on the pro ranks. Alex Singer (Univ. of Virginia) - a starter on Long Island's 2006 WPSL National Championship team - was selected with the first pick (8th overall) of the 2nd Round.
DiMartino and her new coach - Albertin Montoya, who was on the California Storm coaching staff - were excited about their WPS possibilities.
"Christina is the best attacking midfielder in the country by far," said Montoya. "She can create, she can finish and she possesses skills you just can't teach. Her vision of the game is impeccable. We wish her the best in camp with the National Team and look forward to her arrival in the Bay Area."
Also, rounding out the first two rounds were WPSL standouts Kia McNeill (9th overall to St. Louis, All-WPSL selection with Bay State Select) and five-time All-WPSL selection & UConn's First Team NSCAA All-American Meghan Schnur (11th overall to Sky Blue F.C.). Notre Dame's Brittany Bock (5th overall to Los Angeles) played for the 2005 WPSL & U.S. Open Cup Champion F.C. Indiana squad and was named to the All-Final Four Team for her efforts.

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