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11/06/2014 12:28 PM -

The Western New York Flash announced today the club has acquired midfielder Amber Brooks from Portland Thorns FC in exchange for the rights to midfielder McCall Zerboni and defender Kathryn Williamson.

“Amber is an up-and-coming player. She’s that next player that’s just knocking on the door of the National Team,” said Flash general manager and head coach Aaran Lines. “I think she’s going to be eager to perform for the club in light of the opportunity she’ll have in the over two years to end up on the National Team. I’m very excited about bringing Brooks to the Flash.”

Brooks, 23, enters her second season in the National Women’s Soccer League after debuting with the Thorns in 2014.  In her lone season in Portland, Brooks appeared in 20 games, starting all but one, and recorded a goal and two assists. She also started in Thorns FC’s 2-0 playoff loss to FC Kansas City.

Drafted by Portland in the third round (No. 24 overall) of the 2013 NWSL College Draft, the University of North Carolina product made a total of 22 appearances for Bayern Munich in Germany before coming to play in the NWSL. In two seasons in the Frauen Bundesliga, Brooks totaled 10 goals with nine coming during league play.

A native of New Hope, Penn., Brooks earned her first cap with the U.S. Women’s National Team on November 10 in a 4-1 win over Brazil. Prior to appearing with the full squad, Brooks captained the U-23 Women’s National Team in the 2012 Four Nations Tournament Championship. She made her international debut with the U-16 Women’s National Team in 2006 and later captained the U-17 National Team during the 2008 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup. 

Brooks ended her four years at Chapel Hill as a two-time NCAA National Champion, winning the College Cup in both her freshman and senior seasons. A team captain in 2011 and 2012, Brooks finished her collegiate career with 34 goals and 19 assists.

Zerboni, 27, departs Western New York after spending four seasons as a member of the Flash. A graduate of UCLA, Zerboni helped lead the Flash to the 2011 WPS and 2012 WPSL-Elite Championships and captained the club in both 2012 and 2013. In her two seasons in the NWSL, Zerboni appeared in 44 total matches (43 starts) and totaled four goals and two assists.

Williamson, 25, was acquired at the start of the 2014 season through a trade with Portland. Playing at center back, the former Florida Gator appeared in 21 games for a total of 1,699 minutes for the Flash. 

“McCall has been a cornerstone of our club since 2011 and has contributed so much to the Western New York community,” Lines added. “I wish nothing but the best to McCall and Kat.”

Brooks, who is currently on loan with Bayern Munich of the German Frauen Bundesliga for the 2014-15 offseason, will return to Western New York prior to the start of the 2015 NWSL Season.

Amber Brooks
Position: Midfield
Height: 5-6
Born: Jan. 23, 1991
Hometown: Evansville, Indiana
Last club: Portland Thorns FC
College: The University of North Carolina
Citizenship: USA
How acquired: via Trade with Portland Thorns FC on Nov. 6, 2014

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