Contact: Kristen Phillips
Washington Youth Soccer
//FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE//
January 23, 2013 03:12 PM
New National Women’s Soccer League team featuring Hope Solo, Megan Rapinoe and other women’s soccer stars will begin play in 2013
FEDERAL WAY (Jan. 23, 2013) — Washington Youth Soccer and Seattle Reign FC on Wednesday announced that the state’s largest youth soccer organization has purchased the first-ever season tickets sold by the new professional women’s team, which will begin its inaugural season in 2013.
The Seattle Reign FC are one of eight franchises in the National Women’s Soccer League, a new professional women’s league featuring the top players from throughout North America, including stars of the Olympics and FIFA Women’s World Cup. Richland native and former Washington Husky Hope Solo, who has led the U.S.A. to two Olympic gold medals and the 2011 World Cup Final, was named the Reign’s goalkeeper earlier this month, while fellow U.S. Women’s National Team star Megan Rapinoe was also allocated to Reign FC.
"Washington Youth Soccer continues to demonstrate an unwavering commitment to the growth of the game," said Amy Carnell, Seattle Reign FC’s General Manager. "There is nothing more powerful for a young aspiring player than to see their hero play. Our fans deserve the world’s best here in Seattle, and our youth deserve a chance to dream big."
The new league will feature eight franchises, each of which will play a 22-game schedule beginning in April of 2013. Season tickets will be available for purchase beginning at 3pm on Thursday, January 24 exclusively on the Seattle Reign FC website, which can be found at www.seattlereignfc.com.
Seattle-based businessman Bill Predmore is the owner of Seattle Reign FC, while Laura Harvey, a veteran of England’s top-tier professional women’s league, was introduced as the first head coach of Reign FC in December.
"U.S. Soccer, along with the Canadian and Mexican Federations, have created another opportunity to develop a women’s professional soccer league in North America. It is crucial for this league to survive," says Terry Fisher, Washington Youth Soccer CEO. "Washington Youth Soccer has had a part in building the stars of women’s soccer over the past thirty years and will continue to do everything we can to continue that dominance in the world by our World Cup and Olympic champions. We are proud to purchase the FIRST season tickets for the Seattle Reign FC and pledge our unqualified support."
In addition to demonstrating their commitment to supporting the highest level of women’s professional soccer in the world, Washington Youth Soccer’s purchase of the first season tickets ever sold by Seattle Reign FC symbolizes the shared bond between the professional team and the state’s youth organization, which is one of the largest in the United States.
"Washington Youth Soccer is grateful for the leadership and investment in our community by team owner Bill Predmore and the creation of Seattle Reign FC," said Doug Andreassen, President of the Washington Youth Soccer Board of Directors. "Our young female soccer players of Washington Youth Soccer will continue to have role models that can foster the mantra of previous World Cup stars that ‘dreams do come true.’ We wholeheartedly will support the team and look forward to building memories and winning championships together."
Kim Calkins, a former professional player for the WUSA’s Boston Breakers, who now serves as Washington Youth Soccer’s Recreation and Select Director, is excited to see the highest level of competitive women’s soccer return to the Seattle area.
"The Pacific Northwest has always been a champion of women's soccer. I am thrilled to see we finally have a women's professional team to go along with our passion. We encourage all our young players and families to go out to games and support Reign FC," Calkins said.
Washington Youth Soccer Technical Director Timo Liekoski also expressed his excitement and support for Seattle Reign FC and the new NWSL.
"The success of our women on the international stage has been incredible. The world has closed the gap and a substantial professional league is critical for the U.S. to stay at the top," says Liekoski, who served as a U.S. Men’s National Team assistant coach during the 1994 FIFA World Cup. "We want to win the next World Cup and retain our Olympic gold-medal status. Washington Youth Soccer will support and continue to provide programs of excellence for our female players. I look forward to working with Seattle Reign FC coaching and playing staff to develop the stars of the future."
About Washington Youth Soccer
Washington Youth Soccer is the largest youth soccer organization in Washington. Washington Youth Soccer is the state's affiliate for US Youth Soccer, which is the largest sports organization in the United States and the most populous member of the United States Soccer Federation, the governing body for soccer in the United States. The Washington Youth Soccer is the sixth largest membership in the nation; our organization represents over 128,000 players (ages 4-19) and their families, 15,000 coaches on 12,000 teams and 6,500 referees in the state of Washington. Washington Youth Soccer’s mission is to foster the physical, mental and emotional growth and development of the State of Washington's youth through the sport of soccer at all levels of age and competition.
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