As the 2017 NWSL preseason gets on the way, Paul Riley, head coach of the North Carolina Courage, has announced his pre-season roster. The pre-season will allow Riley to watch all his players and watch a few others to make his final selection before the 2017 NWSL season officially starts.
Making a team
Riley is starting with a solid team due to the Courage being the former Western New York Flash. The Flash are the 2016 NWSL champions. Starting with returning players like goalkeeper Sabrina D’Angelo and forward Lynn Williams. Williams has been a force on the front line of the USWNT. He has also invited players like Yuri Kawamura, a Japanese International player, and U-20 USWNT goalkeeper Bryane Heaberlin. Heaberlin helped lead the U-20 USWNT to a Women's World Cup Championship.
Other players that made the list were Claire Wagner, a defender from Clemson University and picked 20th overall during the 2017 NWSL College Draft, forward Ashley Hatch from Brigham Young University and picked second overall in the 2017 NWSL College Draft, forward Darian Jenkins from the University of California Los Angeles picked seventh overall, and Jaycie Johnson, a forward from the University of Nebraska and picked 27th overall during the draft.
As with any pre-season, Riley invited a few other players to join the pre-season roster for a possible spot. Like Heaberlin and Kawamura, defender Tina Iordanou, midfielder Carly Gould, midfielder Maria Lubrano-Lavadera, midfielder Megan Lindsay, and forward Ashley Clark will all be playing for a spot on the final roster for the 2017 NWSL season.
Current pre-season roster
Goalkeepers (3): Katelyn Rowland, Sabrina D’Angelo, Bryane Heaberlin (invited)
Defenders (10): Jaelene Hinkle, Courtney Niemiec, Meredith Speck, Taylor Smith, Abby Dahlkemper, Abby Erceg, Elizabeth Eddy, Claire Wagner, Yuri Kawamura (invited), Tina Iordanou (invited)
Midfielders (9): Michaela Hahn, Sam Mewis, McCall Zerboni, Samantha Witteman, Rosana, Debinha, Carly Gould (invited), Maria Lubrano-Lavadera (invited), Megan Lindsay (invited)
Forwards (8): Makenzy Doniak, Lynn Williams, Jessica McDonald, Kristen Hamilton, Ashley Hatch, Darian Jenkins, Jaycie Johnson, Ashley Clark (invited)