04/11/2016 11:48 AM
The Western New York Flash announced today their regular season roster for the 2016 National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) season. The squad features 11 new Flash players, including experienced players like New Zealand international team captain Abby Erceg and rookies such as 2015 NCAA National Champion and Penn State captain Britt Eckerstrom.
2016 WNY FLASH ROSTER
ROSTERED PLAYERS (20 of 20 spots filled):
GOALKEEPERS (2): Sabrina D’Angelo (FP-CAN), Britt Eckerstrom
DEFENDERS (5): Abby Dahlkemper, Abby Erceg (INT’L-NZL), Jaelene Hinkle (FP-USA), Alanna Kennedy (INT’L-AUS), Courtney Niemiec
MIDFIELDERS (6): Lady Andrade (INT’L-COL), Halimatu Ayinde (INT’L-NGA), Elizabeth Eddy, Jeon Ga-Eul (INT’L-KOR), Michaela Hahn, Samantha Mewis (FP-USA),
FORWARDS (7): Makenzy Doniak, Kristen Hamilton, Adriana Leon (FP-CAN), Jessica McDonald, Taylor Smith, Lynn Williams, Catherine Zimmerman
FEDERATION PLAYERS (FP): 4
INTERNATIONAL ROSTER SPOTS FILLED (INT'L): 5
D’Angelo, 22, made seven starts in seven appearances in her rookie season with the Flash after graduating from a highly successful college career at the University of South Carolina. The goalkeeper made her Canadian women’s senior national team debut earlier this year at the Algarve Cup, earning a clean sheet and helping the team win the tournament.
Eckerstrom, 22, held a career record of 61-14-3 as the goalkeeper for Penn State. Eckerstrom captained the team in all 27 matches and recorded 15 shutouts in her senior season en route to a National Championship.
Dahlkemper, 22, played all but 16 minutes of her rookie season last year with the Flash. The defender spent the offseason playing with Australian W-League’s Adelaide United, and was on the field every minute of the season while earning the club’s Player of the Year and Players’ Player awards.
Erceg, 26, was acquired from the Chicago Red Stars in the offseason. The New Zealand defender is the captain for her country’s squad and is the first player, male or female, to reach 100 caps for her country. Erceg has made appearances in two Olympic Games (2008 Beijing and 2012 London) and two FIFA Women’s World Cups (2011 Germany and 2015 Canada).
Hinkle, 22, was drafted by the Flash seventh overall last year and started all 20 matches for the Flash last year, which helped her earn a call-up to the U.S. Women’s National Team last October.
Kennedy, 21, recently joined the Flash from Australian side Sydney FC. The young defender recently helped the Matildas squad qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics including a goal against Vietnam.
Niemiec, 23, was picked up by the Flash during this year’s preseason after spending two seasons with Portland Thorns FC.
Andrade, 24, signed with the Flash last year after coming from Finnish side PK-35. The Colombian international represented her country in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup. This offseason, she led Colombia’s Women’s Futsal Team to the South American Championship, earning Player of the Tournament honors.
Ayinde, 20, came to the Flash in June last season. The Nigerian midfielder was a member of the African Women’s Championship gold medal team in 2014 and Nigeria’s 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup team.
Eddy, 24, was acquired from the Flash in 2014 from Sky Blue FC. The USC grad spent some time playing with Japanese side Yunogo Belle before returning to the Flash.
Jeon, 27, signed with the Flash at the beginning of the year from Korean side Hyundai Red Steel Angels, becoming the first South Korean player in NWSL history. The midfielder has been representing her country since she was 16 and has racked up 70 appearances and 33 goals, including playing in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
Hahn, 21, played at Florida State University and appeared in every game (103) during her tenure with the Seminoles. Hahn helped lead Florida State to three consecutive ACC Championships and was drafted 9th overall in the 2016 NWSL Draft by the WNY Flash.
Mewis, 23, returns to the Flash after a successful rookie season including a Rookie of the Year nomination. A current member of the U.S. Women’s National Team, Mewis is looking to make the Olympic roster after her game-winning goal against Germany in the SheBelieves Cup final.
Doniak, 22, appeared in 96 games for the University of Virginia and holds the school record for career goals with 64. Doniak was the ACC Offensive Player of the Year in 2015 and was drafted 11th overall in the 2016 NWSL Draft by the WNY Flash.
Hamilton, 23, returns to the Flash for her third season, looking to bounce back from an ACL injury in 2014 that took her out of action. The forward earned First-Team All-American honors in 2013 while at University of Denver.
Leon, 23, joined the Flash in November from Chicago Red Stars. The Canadian international made 20 appearances for the Red Stars last season and was a part of Canada’s 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup roster.
McDonald, 28, was acquired by the Flash from the Houston Dash where she tallied five goals. In 2014, the forward scored 11 goals with Portland Thorns FC.
Smith, 22, was picked up by the Flash during preseason. The UCLA graduate started 80 games, scored 27 goals, and recorded 22 assists in her four seasons with the Bruins.
Williams, 22, was taken sixth overall by the Flash in the 2015 NWSL College Draft. The forward scored four goals in last year’s NWSL campaign, earning the club’s Offensive Player of the Year award.
Zimmerman, 22, joined the Flash during preseason after playing at Providence College. The forward earned First Team Big East honors for the past three years with the Friars.
The Western New York Flash will open the 2016 NWSL season on Saturday April 16 at reigning champion, FC Kansas City. The WNY Flash will begin its home campaign on Friday, April 29 against the Washington Spirit at Sahlen’s Stadium.
Season tickets for the 2016 WNY Flash season are currently on sale at wnyflash.com or by contacting Kayla Kent at firstname.lastname@example.org.