Womens Football Forum

World Women's Football => USA Women's Football => Topic started by: redrobin on September 26, 2008, 12:04:05 PM

Title: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on September 26, 2008, 12:04:05 PM
St. Louis gets Brazilian star Daniela
by Tom Timmermann, St. Louis Post
25th September 2008

The St. Louis team in Women's Professional Soccer that starts in April continued to take shape on Wednesday, with four Olympians, including two from silver-medal winning Brazil, being chosen in the league's international draft.

The St. Louis team chose Daniela Alves, an attacking midfielder, and Renata Costa, a central defender, from Brazil. The team also chose Lotta Schelin, a striker from Sweden, and Melissa Tancredi, a forward from Canada.

The team holds the rights for the players and must negotiate with them or their clubs. Alves and Tancredi are or will be out of contract in the next six months, so can be dealt with directly. The team will have to negotiate with the clubs that have the contracts for Schelin and Costa.

"It's a world all-star team at this point," said owner Jeff Cooper, whose team received Lori Chalupny, Hope Solo and Tina Ellertson from the U.S. national team pool. "We're looking forward to sitting down with the clubs that have the rights to these players and working something out and bringing them to St. Louis."

Title: Re: St. Louis
Post by: redrobin on September 29, 2008, 10:03:40 PM
St. Louis seeking to build a world all-star team
Monday, September 29, 2008
by Kent McDill, Womensprosoccer.com

There will be a decidedly Brazilian flair to the St. Louis team of Women's Professional Soccer if their international picks get signed.

With former Brazilian National Team coach Jorge Barcellos at the helm, St. Louis selected two Brazilian National Team players, midfielder Daniela Alves and defender Renata Costa, in last week’s WPS Initial International Draft.  The players have not signed contracts for the 2009 season, but if they do, St. Louis might be a step ahead of the other teams in the inaugural year of the league.

St. Louis moved up in the WPS Initial International Draft to nab Daniela with its first pick.Team CEO & Governor Jeff Cooper said selecting Daniela and Costa with its first two picks was done in part because they already have a working relationship with Barcellos.

"That is one reason, but the other reason is they were the two best players on the board at the time,” Cooper said.

St. Louis made a trade with the Washington Freedom to move up in the draft to select the 24-year-old Daniela, going from sixth to fourth in the first round.  Daniela (who goes by her first name as do many Brazilian soccer players) is a two-time Olympian, winning silver medals in both the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, losing both times to the United States. She also played for both the 2003 and 2007 Brazilian FIFA Women's World Cup teams and scored in each competition.

Cooper selected the 22-year-old Costa in the second round. She, too, is a two-time Olympian and World Cupper, and she scored a goal in the 2007 World Cup in China.

Again, St. Louis moved up in the third round via trade, this time with Los Angeles, to select striker Lotta Schelin of Sweden, who happens to be a former teammate of St. Louis goalkeeper Hope Solo, allocated to St. Louis in the dispersal of American National Team players.  Schelin, a two-time Olympian and one-time World Cupper with three Olympic goals and two World Cup goals to her credit, provided Solo with a home and friendship back in 2003 when Solo went to Sweden to play professionally.

"I was shocked she was still on the board in the third round,” Cooper said. "I think she is one of the top 10 players in the world right now."

With its own third-round pick, St. Louis selected Canadian Melissa Tancredi, a 26-year-old forward who played for the 2004 Notre Dame national championship team and has played for the Canadian 2008 Olympic and 2007 World Cup teams and the W-League Atlanta Silverbacks.

The trade route St. Louis took is complicated. It swapped the 27th selection of the International draft and the 12th pick in the upcoming WPS General Draft to Los Angeles for the 17th pick of the International Draft and the 24th pick in the General Draft. Basically, it moved up for the International Draft and down for the General Draft, which will occur Oct. 6.

St. Louis then did the same sort of thing with Washington, trading the sixth overall pick in the International Draft, the third pick in the General Draft and the 17th pick in the General Draft to the Freedom for the fourth pick in the International Draft, the 14th in the General Draft and the 15th in the General Draft.

St. Louis was by far the most active team in the draft process in terms of trading picks in order to obtain its desired draft board positioning.

"We felt there was a very strong pool of players, obviously, and we wanted to move up and have a better pick for that,” Cooper said of the international draft. As a result "we will be like a world all-star team,'' he said. "Our prospects of winning the league go through the roof.”

That's assuming, as Cooper pointed out, that the international stars get signed, which is not a done deal by any stretch of the imagination.  The WPS Initial International Draft marked the start of the process by which teams may begin a formal negotiation process with the players they selected.

"I think it is going to be difficult,” Cooper said. "These are the best players on the planet. This is a global market. Sweden, Denmark, France and Germany are very serious about building global powerhouses at their clubs. These players form the bedrock of that plan.

"A lot of people understand the growth area of soccer right now is going to be in women's soccer and they are adding that as a major element to the clubs.”

So what will it take for St. Louis to sign its international players?  Cooper points to the field.

"Once these players see the level of talent in WPS is going to be higher than any of those other leagues, it is going to be easy to sign them,” he said.  “But it may take a year or two to show that. Some of them may take a wait and see attitude to see if the league is real this time."

The rest of the league will be taking a "wait-and-see'' attitude toward St. Louis, with real concern about just how good it will be.

Title: Re: St. Louis
Post by: redrobin on October 22, 2008, 04:33:36 PM
Just for Kicks: St. Louis will field a new professional women's soccer team next spring
by Aimee Levitt
October 01, 2008

In these times of hope deferred, what with the Cardinals' late-season collapse and the Rams on their way to NFL infamy, St. Louisans must remember that baseball and football are mere distractions. At heart, St. Louis is a soccer town.

Granted, that heart may seem deeply buried, considering that it has been more than 30 years since the city last fielded a professional outdoor team. That all changes, though, next April when the new Women's Professional Soccer league kicks off its inaugural season in seven cities, including St. Louis.

"We're the best soccer city in North America," boasts Jeff Cooper, chairman of St. Louis Soccer United, the development company that has fought to bring back pro soccer back to town. "This is going to be the premier women's soccer league on the planet, with the best players in the world."

St. Louis has scored some of the game's biggest stars: forward Tina Ellertson, goalie Hope Solo and midfielder Lori Chalupny, a graduate of Webster Groves' Nerinx Hall High School. All three played on the U.S. national team that brought home a gold medal at the Beijing Olympics in August.

"We couldn't be any more excited," says Cooper. "We had the goal of getting each of the three players we got. I don't think any other market can say that. It couldn't have gone any better."

It took Cooper and St. Louis Soccer United two years and an estimated $1 million in franchise fees to deliver a WPS team. Later this fall, they will apply to Major League Soccer — the fourteen-team men's league — for an expansion franchise and should hear MLS' decision early next year. MLS passed over St. Louis last year in favor of Philadelphia, but Cooper is an optimistic man. This past January, he secured funding for a $572 million, 18,500-seat stadium complex on 400 acres in Collinsville, slated to open in 2011.

The women's team, meanwhile, will have a temporary home at the soccer stadium at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, which seats 3,500, and a coach in Jorge Barcellos, who led the Brazilian national team to a silver medal in Beijing. It will acquire more players in the league draft on October 6. The team will have no nickname and, at least for the first year, will be known simply as "St. Louis."

"If the fans come up with a nickname, we'll use it," says Cooper.

Barcellos agreed last month to move to St. Louis.

"When we heard Coach Barcellos was in the states, we made frantic calls to get him to come to St. Louis," says Cooper.

"This is a new challenge for me and it has been a dream of mine to work in this league," Barcellos writes in an e-mail from Brazil. "My interview with Jeff Cooper and Caryn Chasteen, team president, convinced me that this team is focused and determined to be the best in the league."

The other clincher in Barcellos' decision, explains Cooper, was St. Louis' extensive network of youth-league teams which will become a de facto farm system.

"We brought the three largest and best youth clubs in St. Louis together — Metro United, Scott Gallagher and the St. Louis Soccer Club — and merged them June 1," Cooper says. "That's about 8,000 kids.

"The pro players will be involved in the youth clubs and make sure the kids are getting world-class training and advice," continues Cooper, who played soccer for Granite City High School and DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana. The pro teams will also have automatic rights to draft homegrown players once they're old enough.

For now, though, St. Louis will have to compete with other WPS teams to fill its 24-woman roster. The draft has several phases. The first divided up the U.S. women's national team, sending three players to each of the seven franchises: Bay Area, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York/New Jersey, Washington and St. Louis. The allocations were based on a complicated system that took into account the preferences of both the teams and the players.

The San Francisco-based WPS then invited 128 players, both American and international, to participate in the general draft. There will be another round of drafts later this winter for college seniors who are forbidden by the NCAA to participate in a professional draft until their season is over. Finally, in February, there will be open tryouts in each city.

The season kicks off the first weekend in April. All games will be played on Saturday, culminating in the league championship at the end of August — which Cooper fully expects St. Louis to win.

The team faces one obstacle in its coach's inability to speak English. For the time being, an assistant coach will serve as Barcellos' interpreter. "I will be studying English every day," Barcellos says, "and will be interacting with people as much as possible so I can learn the language. I am excited to teach Portuguese to Jeff and Caryn."

St. Louis has a great soccer tradition, Cooper says. Half of the legendary 1950 national men's team that upset Great Britain in the World Cup hailed from St. Louis. Since then, every national men's and women's team has had at least one local player. Saint Louis University has won more soccer championships than any other school in the country.

Still, the city has never been able to hold on to a professional team. The St. Louis Raiders folded in 1953 and the St. Louis Stars left town in 1977. The fate of the St. Louis Steamers, the money-losing indoor team that cancelled its 2007 season, remains uncertain.

WPS is the second attempt to form a women's league. Five years ago, the Women's United Soccer Association went under due to lack of funds.

"Our challenge is to do things differently from the old WUSA," Cooper explains. "They spent money wildly and squandered an incredible chance. They spent money like NFL teams. We want to treat our team like a small business and keep an eye on the core product: winning soccer games on Saturday."

The model for the new women's league is MLS. "We think they've gotten it right," says Cooper. "They have higher attendance than the NHL. We're confident that model and our ownership group can sustain players' and administrators' salaries."

Barcellos this year will earn between $75,000 and $80,000, depending on bonuses, a relatively modest salary for a professional coach. Player salaries have not yet been determined, says Cooper.

Playing WPS soccer in St. Louis will be a full-time job. "The players have to understand that they are ambassadors for the game and for the franchise," Cooper says. "It's not just good enough to run around the field after games and give autographs and shake hands. Every minute of every day they serve as ambassadors. As players, they're inspiration, and they're aspirational as role models. I'm really excited for this to happen."

Title: Re: St. Louis
Post by: redrobin on October 22, 2008, 05:01:06 PM
St. Louis Picks Four More International Experienced Players
Monday, October 06, 2008 
Extracts from report by Ken Godat

Earlier today, Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) conducted its general draft – during which WPS St. Louis secured four college players, all of which have full U.S. Women’s National team or Youth National Team experience.  The first round pick for St. Louis was defender India Trotter from Florida State University, the second pick was forward Angie Woznuk from the University of Portland, the third pick was midfielder Joanna Lohman from Penn State and the final pick was Notre Dame forward, Amanda Cinalli.

Team CEO Jeff Cooper says, “Once again, we feel great about the results of the draft, we were able to get 3 players who have been featured on the US Women’s National Team and another who is a star for the U-23 team. We have a fantastic mix of speed, size and skill and all of them are world-class players. Watching this team will be a lot of fun.”

Earlier this month,  St. Louis acquired the negotiating rights to Eniola Aluko and Ingvild Stensland in the WPS post-draft discovery process and prior to that St. Louis selected Daniela (Brazil), Renata Costa (Brazil), Lotta Schelin (Sweden), and Melissa Tancredi (Canada) in the leagues International Draft.   These players built upon the foundation established with the allocation of U.S. Women's National Team members Lori Chalupny, Tina Ellertson, and Hope Solo to St. Louis.

Also announced today  was a multi-year television rights agreement between WPS and Fox Soccer Channel.  The deal will include a Sunday Night National Game of the Week and put WPS in more than 34 million homes.  “The multi-media coverage the Fox Soccer Channel will provide is exactly what our fans are looking for”, said WPS St. Louis’ CEO Jeff Cooper.  “FSN will provide the exposure these world class players deserve.”

Below is more detailed information on WPS St. Louis’ picks.

1st Pick - India Trotter - Defender
Hometown: Plantation, Florida

National Team: Made first trip with the full Women’s National Team to the 2006 Four Nations Tournament in China, earning her first cap in a brief appearance against Norway.  Played with the U.S. U-19s during 2003 and 2004.

2nd Pick - Angie Woznuk – Forward
Hometown: El Cajon, Calif.

U.S. National Teams: Earned first cap with the full WNT in 2005, playing against Iceland on July 24 at the Home Depot Center.  Angie was on the roster for the 2006 Four Nations Tournament in China, but did not play.  Has played with the U-16 WNT, U-17 WNT, U-19 WNT and one camp with the U-21 WNT.  One of the stars of the U.S. team that finished third in the 2004 FIFA U-19 World Championship in Thailand, she scored three goals during the tournament as won the Silver Ball as the second most valuable player in the tournament and the Bronze Boot as the third leading scorer.  Started all five games at the CONCACAF Qualifying tournament, scoring four goals including a hat trick in the semifinal win over Mexico that sent the USA to Thailand.  Ended her U-19 international career with 12 goals in 26 games.  Was also a member of the U.S. team that won the 2002 U-19 FIFA World Championship in Canada.   She played in the World Championship Final, 1-0 U.S. victory over Canada.

3rd Pick - Joanna Lohman - Midfielder
Hometown: Silver Spring, Maryland

U.S. National Team: Earned her four caps in 2001, three at the Algarve Cup and one in a match against Italy prior to that tournament.  Joanna trained with the Women’s National Team during the 2004 Olympic Residency Training Camp.  She was a member of the USA’s last three U-21 Nordic Cup championship teams, winning titles in 2002 in Finland, 2003 in Denmark, and 2004 in Iceland.  She had a goal and an assist, starting every match, at the 2004 Nordic Cup.  Lohman scored three goals, including both in a 2-0 victory over Sweden in the championship game at the 2003 Nordic Cup.

4th Pick - Amanda Cinalli – Forward
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio

U.S. National Team: Current member of Under-21 National Team (which is transitioning to U-23 status).  Was a member of the U-21's that won the 2007 Nordic Cup while facing European U-23 squads, and served as captain for U-17 team in 2003 game versus Germany (Bradenton, Fla.), registering a pair of assists in that win.  Amanda also competed with U.S. U-16's during 2002 tournament in Paris.

Title: Re: St. Louis
Post by: redrobin on October 22, 2008, 07:08:50 PM
The WPS October general draft results are on the main league thread but have been followed by some comment on the choices made by the seven teams.

Comment on the St. Louis choices was as follows:-

St. Louis

Picks: India Trotter, Angie Woznuk, Joanna Lohman, Amanda Cinalli

Few teams made a bigger splash, or arguably took a bigger risk, in the international portion of the roster-building process than St. Louis. But regardless of what happens in the efforts to bring Daniela, Renata Costa and Lotta Schelin to the banks of the Mississippi, St. Louis used its limited assets in Monday's draft to great effect. Some teams walked away with more immediate answers, but even without a first-round pick, St. Louis emerged with three players with star-caliber ceilings in India Trotter (if a loan deal can be reached with Frankfurt), Angie Woznuk and Joanna Lohman.

If everything works out perfectly in negotiations for next season (which may be difficult given Schelin’s contract with Lyon), the top three draftees should provide depth as either complementary starters or key reserves. If some or most of the international players, a list that also includes Canada's Melissa Tancredi, Norway's Ingvild Stensland and England's Enoila Aluko, fail to arrive, Trotter, Woznuk and Lohman have the talent to play high profile roles for a young team laying a foundation for future success.

It's especially tempting to imagine what could unfold in a midfield that includes Lori Chalupny -- should Jorge Barcellos choose to play her there -- Woznuk and Lohman. Woznuk is the kind of pure playmaking midfielder that the National Team, and notably Chalupny, haven't had on a regular basis since before injuries pushed Aly Wagner down the depth chart.


Title: Re: St. Louis
Post by: redrobin on October 23, 2008, 12:16:30 PM
Former Irish player Cinalli drafted to pros
(Irish as in Notre Dame scholar, not from the Emerald Isle  :))

Thursday, October 16, 2008
by Graham Hays,

It's not exactly dressing to the nines and shaking hands at the podium with David Stern, but Notre Dame volunteer assistant coach Amanda Cinalli's entry into the world of pro sports drafts proved memorable in a fashion far more familiar to the rest of us.

Without a physical location for last week's Women's Professional Soccer draft, prospects like Cinalli scanned the league's Web site, along with fans, as picks were posted.

"It's kind of a funny story," Cinalli explained. "I was watching it online, and I had been watching it for about an hour and a half or so, and I was seeing [the names of] many of the people I knew and a couple of my friends. I was so excited for them, I was sending them texts and saying congrats. And then right before my name popped up, my Internet connection actually failed, so I was kind of in a rush to get it back on. Finally, after I got it back on, I refreshed the page, I saw the last three draft-pick names and I just saw my name."

With the fifth pick of the fourth round, the St. Louis franchise added Cinalli to a draft class that included recent college stars Angie Woznuk, India Trotter and Joanna Lohman.

"I actually started crying tears of joy," Cinalli said of perhaps the best mouse click of her life. "I couldn't believe it; I was just so excited."

Cinalli started 86 games, scored 34 goals and made three trips to the Women's College Cup in her four years at Notre Dame, including back-to-back trips in 2006 and '07. But partly because of the shadows cast by teammates including Katie Thorlakson and Kerri Hanks, and partly because she possesses about as gentle a demeanor off the field as you're likely to find in major college sports -- she didn't bother to tell anyone in South Bend they were mispronouncing her last name until after she graduated -- she's long been overlooked.

Now, that ability to play and interact without an ego is exactly what makes her ideal for a pro environment in which she'll have an opportunity to play alongside Hope Solo, Lori Chalupny and possibly Brazilian midfielder Daniela.

So for someone who saw the last domestic pro league fall apart the year before she arrived at Notre Dame, what she saw on the computer screen last week was well worth the wait.

"It was a lot of fun to watch when I could when I was younger," Cinalli said of the WUSA. "You see those people on TV and you look up to them and you one day want to be them. And it's just so surreal right now that I have an opportunity to do that."

Title: Re: St. Louis
Post by: redrobin on October 27, 2008, 11:59:13 AM
Woznuk waiting for WPS
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
by Dan Lauletta, womensprosoccer.com

Angie Woznuk has been waiting—literally and figuratively—for WPS to get started.

The former University of Portland standout has spent the last few months being patient with a back injury.  In the meantime the 23 year old is waiting tables at The Thirsty Lion, a popular Irish Pub in her college town.  She was fortunate to have a day off on October 6, the date of the WPS General Draft, but found herself at The Thirsty Lion nonetheless where some co-workers got together to follow the selections with her.

Woznuk was delighted to see her name on the draft board and pleased to learn that she will be playing for Jorge Barcellos in St. Louis.  Barcellos coached the Brazilian National Team for the past three years and brought them to within an eyelash of Olympic Gold in China earlier this year.

Woznuk is an attacking, central midfielder with a flare that has been compared to the Brazilian players Barcellos tutored in recent years.

“I’m real excited to experience the Brazilian coach and see what he’s like,” Woznuk said.  “I’m more of a technical player than I am a physical player.  I definitely try to play with that kind of style, and just after watching their team so many times I can only imagine that (Barcellos) has the same philosophy.  So that’s what really excites me.”

Woznuk admittedly does not know a great deal about the St. Louis Brazilians, Daniela and Renata Costa.  She has though, played a great deal with the club’s other acquisitions.

Many of those connections come from the National Team program where Woznuk got a sniff with the full team in 2008.  She did not make it to China for the Olympic Games, but she was on the first trip to China in 2008, for the Four Nations Tournament in January and netted a goal against Finland, her first and thus far only score with the full National Team.

With bonds among her teammates already in place, that leaves St. Louis itself as the great unknown for Woznuk as she embarks on a professional career.  She has never even visited the Gateway City and will head there next spring without much of an idea what to expect.

“One of my best friends, Becky Sauerbrunn (of the Washington Freedom), is from St. Louis, but other than that, that’s all I know,” Woznuk said.  “I’ve just heard that it gets really hot and humid there, and really cold in the winter.  So it should be interesting.  But I am excited to experience a new city.”

At Portland, Woznuk came up behind the likes of 1999 World Cup champions Shannon MacMillan and Tiffeny Milbrett, and played with Canadian Christine Sinclair, who was drafted by the Bay Area.  From that group she likens her game most to MacMillan’s, a midfielder for the Pilots.

“I think we had more of the same mindset of playing through the midfield while Tiff and Christine were both forwards,” said Woznuk.  “Tiff and Shannon were around the team a lot when I was there and I played with Christine for two years so I definitely know all of them pretty well.“

Milbrett and MacMillan are the old guard of Portland women’s soccer, but neither had the privilege of bringing a National Championship to the campus as Woznuk and Sinclair (twice) were able to do.  Woznuk was a redhshirt sophomore when the Pilots won their second College Cup in 2005.  Sinclair scored twice in the 4-0 rout over UCLA in the title game, but it was Woznuk who netted the game winner.

Aside from her job at The Thirsty Lion, Woznuk is building up her fitness and plans to remain in the Portland area until the time comes to report to St. Louis in the spring.  And she does not expect her back to be an issue.

“It’s already feeling just about 100% so it’s definitely looking good,” she said.  “I’m just starting to get into running and building a cardiovascular base, and then I’ll probably start training with some guys’ club teams.”

Title: Re: St. Louis
Post by: redrobin on November 05, 2008, 11:47:23 AM
From a WPS report last Friday (31st Oct) on one of the St. Louis publicity events featuring the team and their new Head Coach from Brazil, Jorge Barcellos.

"Barcellos, whose Brazilian team brought home Olympic silver after a 1-0 overtime loss to the United States this past fall, brings an extensive resumé to St. Louis, having served as head coach of the Brazilian Women’s National Team since September 2006.  In addition to guiding Brazil to second-place finishes at the 2008 Olympic Games and 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup – the highest placements ever for Brazil in world championship events – Barcellos led Brazil to a first-place finish at the 2007 Pan American Games and second-place finish at the 2006 South American Women’s Championship.  Barcellos also coached the Brazilian U-20s to a third-place finish at the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup.

Coach Barcellos and St. Louis WPS have put together not just any team, but a world class team.  Potential players were drafted recently and we landed three U.S. Olympic Gold medalists; Lori Chalupny, Hope Solo and Tina Ellertson.  Lori is our hometown hero from Nerinx Hall High School.  Hope will be in the nets and some say she is the best goalie in the world!  Tina was a collegiate goal scoring machine but can also play in the back.  The team will play at Ralph Korte Stadium which is located just twenty minutes from downtown St. Louis on Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville’s campus.  With a capacity nearing 5000, the stadium offers not only terrific views of the St. Louis skyline, but also a variety of ways to enjoy the action."

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on February 05, 2009, 12:54:51 PM
Pro goals await ex-Allen/Notre Dame superstar

Wednesday, February 4, 2009
by Kate Hairopoulos, The Dallas Morning News

The first time Allen's Kerri Hanks won the Hermann Trophy – the Heisman of college soccer – it was in the midst of leading Notre Dame in the 2006 NCAA College Cup.

"They kind of said, 'Here ya go,' and I went out and played," Hanks recalled.

The second time she won the Hermann – at a banquet on Jan. 9 in St. Louis – Hanks also had pressing matters, preparing for the soon-to-launch Women's Professional Soccer league.

But Hanks, who had recently finished her record-breaking collegiate career, took time to enjoy it. "It was so cool to be a part of," she said. "I was kind of speechless."

By winning the award twice, she joined an exclusive list that includes Mia Hamm, icon of every girl in cleats.

Hanks' knack for finding the back of the net at Notre Dame has put her in the same sentence as Hamm more than once. Hanks is the only collegiate female player to pile up at least 73 goals and 73 assists in her career. In 2006, she became the first woman to lead the NCAA in goals and assists for a season since Hamm did the same at North Carolina in '92.

Hanks is "in the conversation with some of the all-time greats in the college game," Irish coach Randy Waldrum has said.

Now Hanks, 23, is charged in part with re-establishing what was once among Hamm's biggest successes: creating a broader interest in the sport. WPS – a revamped model from the Women's United Soccer Association, which failed in 2003 – is set to launch play with seven teams in March.

The St. Louis Athletica drafted Hanks with the No. 6 overall pick on Jan. 16, just a week after she was named player of the year.

"We have great players," Hanks said. "They want to start slow and build it up so this league can last."

Dallas was originally slated to have a team and begin play this season, but the inability to secure a stadium contributed to the team being put on hold.

"Things don't always work out the way you've always wanted, but I'm excited about St. Louis," Hanks said.

St. Louis, like Dallas, is home to an active soccer community. National team keeper Hope Solo is also on the roster.

Hanks grew up playing for the Dallas Texans and also played two seasons at Allen before graduating early to focus on a youth national team.

Her dad, Gary, an Englishman turned Texan, helped instill a love of soccer in his daughter. Though Hanks played a wide range of sports in her youth, she watched international soccer with her dad from the time she was 5. She became a big fan of English striker Michael Owen.

Hanks' trademark on-field intensity was honed early. When she came inside to complain that her older brother Trevor, wouldn't give her the ball, Gary would retort, "You have to win it."

Then she'd slam the door on the way outside to do just that.

Hanks said she wears her competitive emotions "on my sleeves" – something she's been criticized for at times.

Away from soccer, Hanks got involved with mentoring young students in South Bend, Ind., and wants to do the same in St. Louis.

Hanks, who earned her bachelor's degree in sociology in May 2008, debated coming back to Notre Dame for her final season. She did, in an attempt to win an elusive national title. The Irish went undefeated, winning 26 straight matches, before falling, 2-1, to North Carolina in the national title game in December.

But, for Hanks, it's time to look ahead.

"I did take it really hard," Hanks said. "Our team was amazing. But ... I have to move on. I have a new chapter. I'm a professional athlete now."


n.b. - The Hermann Trophy referred to is awarded by the Missouri Athletic Club.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 01, 2009, 12:29:43 AM
Saint Louis favors versatility in draft
by Kent McDill, womensprosoccer.com

A quick look at the general draft selections by Saint Louis Athletica might lead you to believe they were trying to shore up their defense.

With its first pick, Saint Louis selected two-time MAC Hermann Trophy winner Kerri Hanks, a forward who is only the fourth player to win the collegiate player of the year award twice, following in the steps of Mia Hamm, Cindy Parlow and Christine Sinclair.

But with his next three picks, Head Coach Jorge Barcellos selected defenders Kia McNeill of Boston College, Stephanie Logterman of Texas and Elise Weber of Notre Dame, a teammate of Hanks.

Adding three top defenders to a roster that already includes Lori Chalupny and Tina Ellertson, who have both played on the back line with the U.S. Women’s National Team, raised a few eyebrows.

"It was a need to fill out our roster, but not necessarily defensively,'' Barcellos said. "We feel that these are players that would fit very well with our team.”

"With these selections we can move Chalupny to the midfield and Ellertson up front,'' he said. "In addition, my view of outside backs is that they can move forward to attack.”

Chalupny played outside back for the 2008 gold medal winning U.S. Olympic team, but in 2007 she was a midfielder for the National Team and scored against China, Nigeria and Norway in the FIFA Women’s World Cup.  Ellertson (née Frimpong), meanwhile, left the University of Washington as the Huskies all-time leading goal-scorer before being converted to a defender by former U.S. National Team Head Coach Greg Ryan.

"[Chalupny] has very good distribution and passing skills, and we believe she would be a great asset for our team in the midfield,'' Barcellos said. “Ellertson is very strong, very fast, and we will try to use all those abilities up front."

Hanks, the sixth pick overall in the 2009 WPS Draft, tallied 84 goals and 73 assists in her college career. "She is a natural goal scorer, and can compliment our attack very well,'' Barcellos said.

A strong, two-way player, McNeill joins Athletica after spending last summer competing in the top women's league in Sweden.  While he selected her strictly for defensive purposes, McNeill may see action at forward in a pinch.  Logterman is playing with the U-23 U.S. Women’s National Team, where she is developing her skills on the outside as Barcellos my utilize her at either left back or left forward.  As for Weber, Barcellos recognizes her technical abilities, which may allow her to play up front in addition to outside back.

For McNeill, a 22-year-old Boston College alumna, draft day was a muddle of emotion..

"I was at home in Connecticut, and I actually couldn't watch the draft because of nerves,'' McNeill said. "One of my friends called me when I got drafted. The draft got started a little late, and I was sitting around thinking 'an hour has gone by and I haven't heard anything'. I was getting a little nervous. I was just about to go check the computer when all of a sudden my phone started ringing off the hook."

McNeill said she was excited about playing with some women she has had past experience with, including Angie Woznuk from the University of Portland, Hanks and Chalupny.

"I'm absolutely thrilled about being drafted by Saint Louis,'' McNeill said. "It is a city I am not too familiar with and I think that it is good because I want to see a different part of the country.

"I'm excited to be a part of the club. It seems like they really have their parts in line to make a great season this year."

Barcellos is also pleased with the makeup of his team two weeks prior to the start of training camp.

"I'm very happy with the players we have selected and I'm sure Saint Louis will have a very good showing,'' Barcellos said. "I am very satisfied with the players we have at our disposal."

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 05, 2009, 03:09:14 PM
Saint Louis Athletica Signs Lori Chalupny
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
by Tony Hubert

Athletica Head Coach and General Manager Jorge Barcellos is pleased to announce that Saint Louis Athletica of the new Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league has agreed to contract terms with Lori Chalupny, making her the first-ever announced signing by the club. Chalupny, a St. Louis native, is currently in Portugal representing the United States in the annual Algarve Cup, along with U.S. teammates Hope Solo and Angie Woznuk, whose contract terms with Athletica are still being negotiated

"It is just so exciting that it is complete now,” said Chalupny. “I cannot wait to get with the team and get the season started. Each step and announcement that the WPS made along the way has made it more real for me and signing this contract is the final step in the process.”

“I am thrilled to have signed a player of such high caliber,” said Barcellos. “She is a player that we always fought to have especially because she is from St. Louis. She is one of the top five players in the world so I am very happy and I am sure the whole Athletica family is happy as well..”

Chalupny, along with Solo and Tina Ellertson, joined Saint Louis Athletica in September of 2008 as part of the WPS National Team player pool allocation. St. Louis’ hometown hero won a gold medal in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, having played five matches in China and scoring in the semi-final.  Chalupny also represented the United States in the 2007 World Cup. Chalupny, recently named co-captain of the U.S. Women’s National Team, has been capped 88 times to date. Her current trip to Portugal is the sixth time she has represented the United States at the Algarve Cup.

Chalupny is a graduate of Nerinx Hall High School in Webster Groves, Missouri and played collegiately at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This fall Chalupny will return to North Carolina to finish her undergraduate degree.

Terms of the contracts were not disclosed.

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 21, 2009, 11:13:03 PM
First Athletica Scrimmage This Past Monday
Monday, March 16, 2009
by Tony Hubert

ST. LOUIS (March 16, 2009)

Saint Louis Athletica held its first full fledged scrimmage Monday as they faced the University of Missouri’s Women’s team in a match at the Scott Gallagher Soccer Complex.

Lori Chalupny, recently named Athletica captain, scored the opener just 10 minutes into the first half. Chalupny’s shot from the right side went off the hands of a diving Missouri keeper before rolling into the back of the net.

Minutes later Angie Woznuk threaded a pass to forward Tina Ellertson who scored with the inside of her right for a quick 2-0 lead.

Missouri was not discouraged as they drew a goal back in the ensuing minutes. A pass just inside the top of the penalty area found a Tiger forward in space and she calmly took one touch to settle before firing a strike past Athletica keeper Jillian  Loyden. Loyden was filling in for Hope Solo who is resting after having a procedure to remove “lose bodies” from her elbow.

The rest of the first half would belong to Athletica as they began to hit stride. Forward Kerri Hanks found space on the left wing and worked toward the goal line before delivering a perfectly weighted ball to Tina Ellertson. Ellertson’s first shot was stopped by the Missouri keeper but she slammed home her own rebound for a 3-1 advantage.

Angie Woznuk showed her scoring touch when she collected a ball on top of the Missouri penalty area and delivered a well placed right footed shot into the back of the net with more than 10 minutes left in the first half.

Athletica’s four first half goals came on ten shots, six of which were on goal.

The second half would see more scoring. Bloomington, Illinois native Ashlee Pistorius netted Athletica’s fifth as she ran onto a well-placed pass from Angie Woznuk. Woznuk, just back from U.S. National Team duty in Portugal, played an early ball right up the middle of the field for Pistorius who took it in stride and finished it off with a tidy shot low to the keeper’s left.

Chalupny scored her second of the game for a 6-1 lead. This goal coming off another great move from Kerri Hanks. Hanks found Chalupny on the right side and Athletica’s captain finished with a well paced shot into a virtually empty net.

Later in the half Tina Ellertson completed her hat trick when a Missouri miscue gifted her the ball just inside the left of penalty area. Ellerston struck it immediately back across the goalmouth and tucked it just inside the far post for a 7-1 lead.

Missouri would score once more for a 7-2 final.

Athletica’s next scrimmage will be against Notre Dame, Saturday night March 21.

Athletica Starters:

Goal: Jillian Loyden
Defense: Elise Weber, Niki Cross, Kia McNeill, Sheree Gray
Midfield: Lisa Stoia, Lori Chalupny, Amanda Cinalli, Angie Woznuk
Forwards: Kerri Hanks, Tina Ellertson

Goal: Erin Kane (2nd Half)
Defense: Katie Kelly (2nd Half)
Midfield: Lydia Vandenburgh, Erin Walter, Lyndsey Patterson
Forward: Ashlee Pistorius

Did Not Play: Hope Solo, Sara Larsson


Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 21, 2009, 11:19:37 PM
Kerri Hanks Signs With Saint Louis Athletica
Monday, March 16, 2009
by Tony Hubert

ST. LOUIS (March 13, 2009)

Athletica Head Coach and General Manager Jorge Barcellos announced today that Saint Louis Athletica of the new Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league have agreed to terms with two-time M.A.C Hermann Trophy winner Kerri Hanks, selected by Saint Louis in the first round with the sixth pick overall in the 2009 WPS Collegiate Draft.   

The M.A.C. Hermann Trophy is presented by the Missouri Athletic Club to the outstanding male and female Division I collegiate soccer player in the country. Hanks, a University of Notre Dame product, won the award for the second time in 2008 and was a previous winner in 2006. 

“I am extremely excited about being a part of a great club and working with the best players and coaches in the world,” said Hanks. “It is a dream come true to be a professional athlete. Now my job is to do what I love the most: play soccer, which is every player’s dream.”

“Hanks is going to help the team a lot,” says Barcellos. “ She is interested in learning and interested in practicing in our style. She always wants to do extra work after practice on her shooting and free kick taking.  This is a very good player, a very interesting player, who is fast and good technically, plus she is a good quality person.”     

Hanks became just the fourth player to win the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy two times, with Mia Hamm being the first to do so. Hanks was also the second player in collegiate history to lead the nation in goals and assists, again following in the footsteps of Mia Hamm, the first player to accomplish such a feat. While at Notre Dame Hanks led the Irish to the Division I National Championship game in 2008. She finished her collegiate career with 84 goals and 73 assists.     

Hanks holds or shares over 65 school records at Notre Dame.

Hanks has represented the United States on the U-23 Women’s National Team and on the U-19 team. She has eight caps with the U-23’s and 30 caps with the U-19’s. Hanks scored an amazing 22 goals in those 30 appearances for the U.S. U-19 Women’s National Team. Hanks was a member of the 2004 U.S. U-19 team that won the World Championship in Thailand. She also played in the 2002 U-19 Women’s World Cup in Canada where she played with future Athletica teammate Lori Chalupny.

Saint Louis Athletica begins play with their home opener on Saturday, April 4, at Ralph Korte Stadium on the Southern Illinois University - Edwardsville campus.

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 21, 2009, 11:31:27 PM
Team Preview: Barcellos bringing samba style to Athletica
Friday, March 20, 2009
by Kent McDill, womensprosoccer.com

Jorge Barcellos preaches attractive, free-flowing soccer, a style that helped him guide Brazil to second-place finishes at the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the 2008 Olympics.

Now there is a discernable level of excitement about the possibility of him translating that same style and the accompanying results to his new assignment, coaching Saint Louis Athletica in the premiere season for Women's Professional Soccer.

His new players know Barcellos is going to be looking to repeat his success in WPS and will demand top-flight play from those he selects to represent Athletica in 2009.

“Jorge likes to have an attacking mindset,” said midfielder/forward Amanda Cinalli. “He believes in quick passing, and movement. He's very technical. He's hoping we can bring more of that game to the United States.”

“His system is very great soccer to watch,” said forward Kerri Hanks. “It will be interesting for players to play and fans to watch. It's different than any kind of American system.”

In describing his hopes for Athletica, Barcellos spoke about a complete approach.

“We plan on fielding a very compact team, very compact defensively,” Barcellos said.
“We will mark tightly and not give space to forwards. Offensively, we will be very fast with a lot of movement.”

In building his team, Barcellos concentrated on offensive skills and forward-thinking defenders, especially on the outside. National Team members Lori Chalupny and Angie Woznuk will help push the attack, along with former Notre Dame teammates Cinalli, Hanks and Melissa Tancredi, who is Canadian. The team also includes English National Team forward Enoila Aluko, who has five international team goals to her credit.

“Jorge said he wants to use me as an attacking midfielder,” said Cinalli, who has played at the U-21, U-19 and U-16 levels for the United States.

“I'm pretty sure he is going to use me on top,” said Hanks, who trained with the full national team two years ago. “He likes how I run on and off the ball.”

Among the foreign players available to Athletica are Brazilians Daniela Alves and Francielle, who are both midfielders accustomed to Barcellos' needs. Alves scored twice for Brazil in last year's Olympics, and Francielle scored in the 2006 U-20 FIFA Women’s World Cup in a match against Australia.

Defensively, the team will be led by U.S. National Team starting goalkeeper Hope Solo, who was just named the Best Player of the Tournament at the 2009 Algarve Cup where the U.S. finished second.

In front of Solo, Barcellos has plenty of options including Kia McNeill, a Boston College alumna, Renata Costa, who has played in two World Cups with Brazil, and Swede Sara Larsson, who has played for the last three Swedish Olympic teams. Tina Ellertson, a member of the U.S. 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup team, may also see time in defense.

Barcellos said he is looking forward to seeing how the team's abilities translate to his demand for offensive soccer.

“I always like to coach an offensive team,” Barcellos said. “Because of their ability offensively we are working on getting better so when the time comes we are ready to develop that offensive ability that our defenders have. I am very happy with the team in both the offensive and defensive aspects of the game so far.”

Barcellos said he is aiming his sights squarely on the first game against the Chicago Red Stars on April 4 at Southern Illinois University, and the players are equally focused on what that game is going to be like.

“We anticipate that all of the games will be hard and tough,” Barcellos said. “But we have to pay special attention to the first game because that is the toughest one.”

“I'm nervous for all of us,” Hanks said. “I know the players want to get out on the field and get playing.”

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 24, 2009, 01:47:58 PM
Gold Medal Goalkeeper Hope Solo Signs Official Athletica Contract for ’09
by Tony Hubert

St. Louis - Monday March 23, 2009

Athletica Head Coach and General Manager Jorge Barcellos announced today that Saint Louis Athletica of the new Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league have agreed to terms with goalkeeper Hope Solo, who joined Athletica in September of 2008 as part of the WPS National Team player pool allocation.

“It felt good to put pen to paper,” said Solo. “To be able to sign a contract with Saint Louis represents a big step for women’s soccer in this country. I love to play for the national team but in the long run it is better for the development of the game and for the development of more players to have a full time professional league. It’s also great to not have to wait for the Olympics or World Cup to have a chance to win a championship.”

“Just coaching her is a great pleasure for me,” says Barcellos. “ To coach the number one goalie in the world is an honor. She understands the game, the tactics, and is always asking questions trying to learn my style of play.”

Terms of the contracts were not disclosed.

Solo joins teammates Lori Chalupny, Angie Woznuk, Kia McNeill, Eniola Aluko, Melissa Tancredi, and Amanda Cinalli who have signed contracts with Athletica.

Solo, along with Athletica teammate Lori Chalupny, won the gold medal in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. Solo played every minute of all six matches in China and was instrumental in leading the United States to the Olympic title.  In 2008 she also was the starting goalkeeper in the championship games of the Four Nations Cup, The Algarve Cup, and the Peace Queen Cup. Solo most recently featured for the U.S. Women’s National Team in this year’s Algarve Cup along with her Saint Louis teammates Chalupny and Angie Woznuk. Solo was voted “Player of the Tournament” for her outstanding performance that helped lead the U.S. into the championship game.

Solo is a native of Richland, Washington and attended the University of Washington where she was a three time All-American.

Saint Louis Athletica begins play with their home opener on Saturday, April 4, at Ralph Korte Stadium on the Southern Illinois University - Edwardsville campus.

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 24, 2009, 04:30:40 PM
Chalupny Leads Athletica to 3-1 Preseason Win Over Notre Dame
Sunday, March 22, 2009
by Tony Hubert

EDWARDSVILLE (March 21, 2009) - Saint Louis Athletica faced the University of Notre Dame in Saturday at Edwardsville High School in a tune up match for the upcoming Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) season.

The matchup was a fitting one since Athletica features four Notre Dame alums – Forward Kerri Hanks, Defenders Melissa Tancredi and Elise Weber, and midfielder Amanda Cinalli. Tancredi and Cinalli were members of the Fighting Irish team that won the 2004 NCAA Championship. Hanks and Weber were members of the 2008 NCAA Runner-Ups.

Athletica opened the scoring in the sixth minute Hanks headed home a Lori Chalupny cross. Chalupny won a throw in at the corner flag as she pressured an Irish defender. Chalupny played a short throw to Angie Woznuk who touched it back to Chalupny who crossed with her left. Hanks made an unmarked run down the center channel to connect with the cross from seven to eight yards out beating the Notre Dame keeper cleanly.

“The first half was very good,” said Head Coach Jorge Barcellos. “The attacking movement from right to left was perfect. The passing was excellent and our defense stayed very compact.”

Kerri Hanks found more space in the 17 minute as she ran at the Irish defense from the top of the penalty area. Hanks shot was struck well but the Irish keeper played it off her chest and smothered the rebound.

Moments later Chalupny crossed from the right for Hanks again but her header was partially blocked by the Irish defender.

Atheltica’s Team Captain was just getting started.  23 minutes in Chalupny picked up a loose ball outside the penalty area before unleashing a shot from 22 yards that smacked the crossbar near the upper left corner. Before Notre Dame could clear their lines Amanda Cinalli pulled a right-footed shot wide of the far left post.

Athletica kept the pressure on and one minute later made it 2-0 when Angie Woznuk threaded a pass to Chalupny on the top of the penalty area. Chalupny dribbled in and finished calmly with using the outside of her right foot. The goal was Chalupny’s third of the preseason and the assists was Woznuk’s third.

Chalupny’s play in the first half left Barcellos speechless. “I have no words good enough to describe how Chalupny performed.”

Athletica continued to dominate play throughout the first half. In the 28th minute Chalupny unleashed a 26-yard drive from straightaway center that Notre Dame’s keeper handled cleanly. In the 30th minute Angie Woznuk defended the Irish’s first real attack clearing a ball of the foot of the attacker on the left edge of the penalty area. Seconds later Chalupny stuck again from just left of center but she scuffed her shot from 24 yards and the keeper was left to just pick up a rolling ball.

England’s Eniola Aluko made her presence felt when she broke free on the right and dribbled inside the six-yard box, though she was unable to get off a final shot. A second chance ball resulted in another Chalupny cross for Hanks but an Irish Defender rose to meet it just before Hanks was able to get a head on it.

Angie Woznuk got onto a loose ball in the 36th just after Chalupny was brought down. Her left footed shot from outside the area drifted wide left of the near post.

“Woznuk was very creative,” said Barcellos. “Our attack in the first half was great.”

In the 37th minute Chalupny brokered a move from midfield that found Aluko wide to the right who crossed from 10 yards out to a streaking Amanda Cinalli at the back post. Cinalli’s sliding effort just trickled wide of the left post.

The second half began with Brazilian international Daniela making her first appearance of preseason. Daniela wasted no time getting into rhythm just 7 minutes into the half as she attacked from the top of the area before having the ball tipped off her foot.

A slow start otherwise to the second half before Lisa Stoia managed a shot from well out side the right elbow of the area. One minute later Aluko delivered a shot from off a pass from Stoia blasting it past the keeper’s right.

10 minutes in Notre Dame got their first shot of the game off. Erin Kane, subbed in at halftime for Jillian Loyden, dove and covered to her right and held it cleanly.

In the 58th minute Lori Chalupny drew a penalty on the edge of the area. Melissa Tancredi played a ball from the backline into Hanks who brought it down off her chest and slipped it to an on rushing Chalupny whose first touch brought her into the area where she was then fouled from behind.

Chalupny converted her own penalty with an easy finish to the left sending the keeper the wrong way. 3-0 Athletica.

Daniela managed her first shot on target two minutes later from just inside the top of the arc. A good hard low shot that the Irish keeper handled well.

Notre Dame pulled a goal back before the end of the game when senior Amanda Clark ripped a 25-yard drive that beat Erin Kane to her upper left hand corner for a 3-1 final.

Next up for Athletica is Saint Louis University before the April 4 home opener against the Chicago Red Stars.

Starting Lineup:

G: Jillian Loyden
D: Elise Weber, Melissa Tancredi, Kia McNeill, Tina Ellertson
M: Lori Chalupny, Lisa Stoia, Angie Woznuk, Amanda Cinalli
F: Kerri Hanks, Eniola Aluko

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 26, 2009, 04:13:24 PM
Saint Louis Athletica Announce Final 22 Player Roster

ST. LOUIS - March 25, 2009

Athletica Head Coach and General Manager Jorge Barcellos today announced his final 22-player roster, as mandated by Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS). The Saint Louis roster is now comprised of the following players:-

Saint Louis Athletica - Starting Roster

1   Hope Solo - Goalkeeper
2   Kerri Hanks - Forward               
3   Stephanie Logterman - Defender           
4   Sara Larsson (Sweden) - Defender
5   Sheree Gray - Defender                 
6   Kia McNeill - Defender
7   Lisa Stoia - Midfield
8   Tina Ellertson - Defender/Forward           
9   Eniola Aluko (England) - Forward  - (Chelsea)              
10 Daniela Alves Lima (Brazil) - Midfield - (Linkopings)           
11 Angie Woznuk - Midfield
12 Elise Weber - Defender
13 Jillian Loyden - Goalkeeper
14 Melissa Tancredi - (Canada) - Defender/Midfield
15 Amanda Cinalli - Midfield           
16 Erin Walter - Midfield
17 Lori Chalupny - Midfield           
18 Lydia Vandenbergh - Defender               
19 Niki Cross - Defender               
20 Ashlee Pistorius - Forward
21 Francielle Manoel Alberto - Midfield - (Santos)               
22 Erin Kane - Goalkeeper               
“We plan on fielding a very compact team, very compact defensively,” said Barcellos. “We will mark tightly and not give space to forwards. Offensively we will be very fast with a lot of movement and this roster now reflects players who posses those qualities that we desire.”

Two players were released from preseason camp on Saturday March 21, following a scrimmage at Edwardsville High School in Edwardsville, Illinois.

Saint Louis Athletica kicks off the season with its home opener on Saturday, April 4, against the Chicago Red Stars at Ralph Korte Stadium on the campus of SIUE. Individual tickets for all matches are now available at by calling 1-888-STL-GOAL or by visiting

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on March 27, 2009, 12:41:30 PM
Saint Louis Athletica Announces Signings of Tina Ellertson and Daniela Alves

Wednesday, March 25, 2009
by Tony Hubert

Athletica Head Coach and General Manager Jorge Barcellos announced today that Saint Louis Athletica of the new Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league have agreed to terms with Tina Ellertson, who joined Saint Louis with in the 2009 WPS National team player pool allocation, and Daniela Lima Alves, who was acquired by Saint Louis with their first pick in the 2009 WPS International Draft.

“I feel like I am on top of the world.  It’s such an honor to play in the WPS inaugural season, particularly with Saint Louis,” said Ellertson. “A new women’s pro soccer league is something that I have been looking forward to for years.  And as a mother to two girls, it is so exciting to be an inspiration to young women across the world.”

“I am extremely happy to be a part of Athletica,” said Daniela. “Last Saturday was our first exhibition game, which was very exciting to participate in so soon after arriving to the U.S.  And the fact that we played well and won the game was the perfect way to start the league’s first season. 

“Tina is a real team player, who brings speed and a number of different assets to the squad,” said Barcellos. “Meanwhile, Daniela has just arrived and already shows a lot of potential. Anyone who comes in with this amount of talent adds to our team and Daniela has the chance to be one of the best players in the league.”

Ellertson was a member of the 2007 U.S. Women’s World Cup team and has been a regular for the United States Women’s National Team since 2005, having missed the first four months of the 2008 season due to the birth of her second daughter, Mya Joy, on May 4. Ellertson is a converted forward who earned her first three caps with the U.S. in 2005 playing in defense.

Daniela is one of Brazil’s most gifted players and has been a mainstay on their national team for nearly a decade. She has played for Brazil in three Olympic Games, winning two silver medals, and has participated in two World Cups. Her arrival in St. Louis reunites her with former Brazilian head coach Jorge Barcellos, who selected Daniela to start for Brazil in twelve straight matches over the course of the 2007 World Cup and 2008 Olympic Games.

Daniela has been so prevalent in Brazil’s lineup that she has started 16 straight games in the Olympic Finals tournament dating back to the 2000 Sydney Games and has started ten straight games for Brazil in the Women’s World Cup dating back to 2003.

Saint Louis Athletica begins play with their home opener on Saturday, April 4, at Ralph Korte Stadium on the Southern Illinois University - Edwardsville campus.

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on April 14, 2009, 01:08:43 AM
Saint Louis Athletica Drops Season Opener to Chicago

Saturday, April 04, 2009
by Tony Hubert

Saint Louis Athletica fell 1-0 tonight before a capacity crowd of 5,008 at Ralph Korte Stadium. A Lindsay Tarpley goal in the 78th minute gave Chicago a late lead which they held for the final 12 minutes plus stoppage time.

“It happened so fast, Dalmy played a great ball into the box and I made a back post run and got through and was just there to finish it off,” said Tarpley.

Saint Louis Athletica set the tone early in the first half as they controlled play and took an early advantage on shots, at one point outshooting Chicago six to one. Angie Woznuk had the first attempt on goal of the game as she came in from the right and unleashed a shot that Red Star goalkeeper Caroline Jonsson parried over the bar. Saint Louis kept up the pressure throughout the half but were not able to get on the scoreboard despite outshooting the Red Stars nine to four in the first 45 minutes.

Chicago’s best opportunity in the first half came ten minutes from the time. Carli Lloyd connected on a cross from Marian Dalmy and drilled a shot straight at Hope Solo who made the save. Lloyd’s shot rebounded off Solo into the air and fell to Lindsay Tarpley who headed it onto goal. Solo recovered to make the save and held on.

The second half saw Athletica keep up the pace as they out shot the Red Stars again, this time by a seven to three margin.  Athletica could never find the right sequence to get a ball past Jonsson who posted four saves for the game to earn the shutout. Meanwhile Hope Solo posted three saves for the night.

“We’ll rebound from this, it won’t be hard, said Solo. “It was our first game. The goal we allowed shows you what happens at this level of play if you do not stay focused for 90 minutes,” said Athletica Captain Lori Chalupny. “Even if the outcome had been different tonight our goal remains to get better. You’ll see a completely different team at the end of the year.”

Next up for Athletica will be the Boston Breakers Saturday night April 11th at Harvard Stadium. The next Athletica home game will be on April 25 against the Los Angeles Sol. This match will be a 3:00 kick-off and will be played at Robert R. Hermann Stadium on the campus of Saint Louis University.


Saint Louis Athletica: 1 Hope Solo, 2 Kerri Hanks, 4 Sara Larsson, 6 Kia McNeill, 7 Lisa Stoia, 8 Tina Ellertson (5 Sheree Gray, 65), 9 Eniola Aluko (21 Francielle Manoel Alberto, 84), 10 Daniela Alves Lima, 11 Angie Woznuk, 14 Melissa Tancredi, 17 Lori Chalupny

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on April 14, 2009, 01:29:07 AM
Red Stars top Athletica in season opener
by Tom Timmermann, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

EDWARDSVILLE -- On a night where the event itself may have overshadowed the result, St. Louis Athletica dropped its inaugural Women's Professional Soccer game 1-0 to the Chicago Red Stars on Saturday night at Korte Stadium.

That there is a WPS, that there is a professional soccer team playing in Southern Illinois, was the biggest accomplishment of the evening. The game drew a crowd of 5,008, including U.S. Soccer Federation secretary general Dan Flynn, and fans were still arriving 30 minutes into the game, which may be indicative of the parking and access roads at SIUE as much as anything.

"We had a great defensive performance," Red Stars head coach Emma Hayes said, according to goal.com. "There was an awful lot of emotion coming into the game. I think we deserved to net the goal in the end."

The crowd skewed toward the young; most adults had a couple of kids in tow. When the Athletica players came over to the crowd to sign autographs after the game, there were still squeals from the faithful despite the result.

"We would have loved to have come out with a win," Athletica captain Lori Chalupny said, "but we had, what, 5,000 people cheering us on? This is still an extremely memorable moment for me and a historic moment for soccer in St. Louis and the United States."

The game's only goal came in the 78th minute, from national team forward Lindsay Tarpley on a long ball from a defender. "The goal showed you have to stay focused for 90 minutes," Chalupny said. "At this level, any lapse for just a second is serious."

Still, it was the game itself that was the winner on this night, even if it was a 1-0 scoreline.

"Phenomenal," said team owner Jeff Cooper, looking up at the grandstand at halftime. "What a great atmosphere. It's exactly what we want it to be. We've got a packed house, great atmosphere, great game, a nice quality of play on both sides. It's about a perfect night. It's really fun to finally be competing on the field instead of off it."

The level of play was about what you would expect for two teams that have only been together for a couple weeks and that were playing their first real matches together. The play was sloppy at times, crisp at others, and a stiff wind blowing up the field didn't help.

"This was the first game of a long season," said Athletica goalie Hope Solo, who acknowledged that there were certainly "a lot of nerves" showing. "We're still trying to get our system in place. I think you'll see a different team in a month and a half."

Chalupny agreed. "Even if we'd won and the outcome had been completely different, our goal would be to get better," she said. "You'll see a completely different team by the end of the season."


Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on April 16, 2009, 12:32:08 AM
Boston Breakers Hand Saint Louis Athletica Second Straight Loss

Saturday, April 11, 2009
by Tony Hubert

BOSTON - Athletica’s first road match of the year turned into a near repeat of their home opener. Dominating play early, outshooting their opposition by a wide margin, and unfortunately failing to score for their second straight match as they fell 2-0 to the Boston Breakers Saturday night at Harvard Stadium.

It was a near carbon copy repeat of last week’s performance against Chicago. Once again Saint Louis controlled play in the first 45 minutes yet went to the locker room 0-0 at the half. And once again their opponent struck first in the second half against the run of play.

“Its something we have been talking about the whole week. We have been practicing on how to score,” said Head Coach Jorge Barcellos. “It has been frustrating but we are working on it.”

“Our focus at this point has to be to score goals, we are playing well together and creating chances but we have to put the ball in the back of the net,” said Athletica Captain Lori Chalupny. “I don’t know why we aren’t scoring. Part of it is being unlucky, We had some great shots that just took a deflection or something. We just need to stay composed around the box.”

England International Kelly Smith gave the Breakers the lead in the 53rd minute on a goal assisted by Kelly Schmedes. Saint Louis held a nearly 4 to 1 shot advantage at that stage yet found themselves trailing once again despite their efforts up to that point.

“We have played well two weeks in a row but have zero points, at some point we have to get results,” concluded Chalupny.

The game started with promise and Athletica Head Coach Jorge Barcellos made no changes to his lineup from last weeks home opener. And just like in the home opener Athletica brought the play to their opponent in the early going when an Eniola Aluko cross set up an early corner kick for Daniela to take at the 5 minute mark. Boston responded just minutes later winning their first corner of the match in the 8th minute.

Unlike last week their were no shots taken by either side in the first 15 minutes as each team looked for a way to get something towards the goal. While there was a lack of shooting early on there were plenty of fouls in what was a rough game to that point. Athletica committed five fouls in the opening 20 minutes to Boston’s one. Sara Larsson picked up the game’s first yellow card for a hard tackle on Kelly Smith in the 21st minute.

“It was a chippy game altogether,” stated Chalupny.

Athletica took the first good chance of the game in the 24th minute when Kerri Hanks got on the end of a Lori Chalupny cross but was denied a goal as Breaker goalkeeper Kristin Luckenbill came up with a great save. Boston got on the attack in the ensuing minutes but Athletica’s back line was able to clear consecutive build ups by the Breakers.

Brazil’s Daniela got off just the second shot of the game at the half hour mark and Boston’s Kristine Lilly answered with one of her own two minutes later. Lori Chalupny had a chance in the 35th minute but was unable to steer her shot on goal. Kerri Hanks took her second chance in the 38th minute and Chalupny followed up with another at the 40th minute mark forcing a save as Athletica began to dominate play towards halftime.

Eniola Aluko managed a shot in the 44th minute but Luckenbill made another save to keep Saint Louis off the board. One minute later Angie Woznuk took her first shot of the match but still no goal for Saint Louis who outshot Boston 8 to 1 in the opening 45 minutes.

The second half started with Jorge Barcellos making a tactical switch. Sheree Gray came on for Eniola Aluko. Gray moved to right back and Tina Ellertson moved to forward. The moved paid dividends as Athletica managed another flurry of shots including one on target from Kerri Hanks.

Boston would take just their second shot of the game in the 53rd minute as Amy Rodriguez launched an effort towards goal. Seconds later Boston would take the lead when Kelly Smith found the back of the net on a set up from Kelly Schmedes.

The Boston goal prompted Jorge Barcellos to use his second substitution as he brought on Francielle in the 55th minute and took off Daniela. Francielle was also brought in as a second half sub in the April 4 home opener.

“Daniela is just coming back from injury and she was making a lot of bad passes. Matter of fact the first goal she lost the ball and that’s how the goal happened,” said Barcellos. “And Daniela was playing a little bit wide, I wanted her to play in the middle a little bit more. She was going too far wide and that’s why I subbed her out.”

Kelly Smith turned another shot on goal in the 62nd minute forcing a quality save from Hope Solo and subsequently won a corner kick but Saint Louis was able to clear and relieve the pressure.

Athletica’s second yellow card of the game came in the 68th minute when Melissa Tancredi committed a hard foul on Kristine Lilly. Boston managed a shot off the free kick but Athletica’s back line cleared again. But for the first time in the match Athletica seemed to be losing steam and looked off the pace as Boston grabbed the momentum heading into the last 20 minutes.

In the 74th minute Jorge Barcellos made his last substitution, another tactical change as he brought on Elise Weber for Lisa Stoia. Weber moved to left back and Melissa Tancredi went up front as a third forward joining Hanks and Ellertson as Athletica began their final push in the last 15 minutes.

Alex Scott picked up a yellow card in the 79th minute when she brought down Lori Chalupny. Sara Larsson and Kelly Smith then got into a shoving match. As play resumed Melissa Tancredi picked up a foul as she brought down Kristine Lilly.

Boston killed off the game in the 87th minute when Kristine Lilly got her shot past Hope Solo. Kelly Smith had the assist. Boston evens up their record while Athletica fall to 0-2 on the year.

Next up for Saint Louis will be the Los Angeles Sol at Hermann Stadium on April 25 for a 3:00 kickoff.


Saint Louis Athletica:  1 Hope Solo, 2 Kerri Hanks, 4 Sara Larsson, 6 Kia McNeill, 7 Lisa Stoia (12 Elise Weber, 74), 8 Tina Ellertson, 9 Eniola Aluko (5 Sheree Gray, 46), 10 Daniella Alves Lima (21 Francielle Manoel Alberto. 55), 11 Angie Woznuk, 14 Melissa Tancredi, 17 Lori Chalupny.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: John on April 16, 2009, 12:37:19 AM
Nice to see Kelly doing so well.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on April 27, 2009, 02:43:50 PM
Los Angeles Sol tie Saint Louis Athletica 0-0 in an intense show down

WPS - Staff Report
25th April, 2009
St. Louis, Missouri

The Los Angeles Sol tied Saint Louis Athletica 0-0 on a hot Saturday afternoon at Robert R. Hermann Stadium in St. Louis.. The Los Angeles Sol (3-0-1) remains undefeated while Saint Louis Athletica (0-2-1) is still seeking their first win.

“It was a very difficult game and we had very good chances. Goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc made huge saves for the team,” said Los Angeles Sol Head Coach Abner Rogers. “It was a physical game and St. Louis had that edge on us. Overall, it was a very exciting game for the fans.”

With close shots on goal by the Sol's Shannon Boxx and Aya Miyama and missed shots from Athletica's Daniela and Lori Chalupny the game remained scoreless in the first half. 

After the half, the action heated up.

In the 73rd minute, Katie Larkin eluded Tina Ellertson and dribbled into the penalty area. Ellertson tried to win the ball back, but was late on a slide tackle clipping Larkin’s back foot and causing a penalty.  Aly Wagner took the kick for the Sol, but was denied by goalkeeper Hope Solo.

“I don’t think she struck it very well,” said Solo. “Nevertheless I was going to my right.”

Following the penalty miss, Athletica dashed to the other end of the field and Daniela nearly scored but pushed her shot wide left. 

Athletica dominated until the 83rd minute, when a flurry of chances inside the area resulted in a handball on Sol Defender Allison Falk. Midfielder Lori Chalupny took the penalty, but Sol keeper Karina LeBlanc was up to the task.  Chalupny’s shot went right down the middle and LeBlanc barely moved as Athletica’s goal scoring drought continued.

“I didn’t hit it where I needed to and LeBlanc was right where I kicked it,” said Chalupny.  “That is the way the season has been going.”

“We have been working mostly on finishing in practice,” said Athletica's coach Jorge Barcellos. “I think what is missing is us being calm and tranquil. I think the pressure to score is getting to them.”

In the 89th minute, Angie Woznuk nearly gave Saint Louis a dramatic winner. Woznuk got to a second ball and put her shot toward the upper left hand corner only for Karina LeBlanc to make a spectacular save.

“Anytime you have seasoned world-class players missing like we did today with Marta, Camille Abily, and Han Duan you definitely miss their talent,” said Rogers. “We are looking forward to the challenge in Boston next week.”

Saint Louis Athletica returns to action against the Washington Freedom in the WPS Sunday on FSC televised match on Sunday May 3, at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown, Maryland. The game kicks off at 6pm ET.


Saint Louis Athletica: 1 Hope Solo, 2 Kerri Hanks (9 Eniola Aluko, 53), 6 Kia McNeill, 7 Lisa Stoia, 8 Tina Ellertson, 10 Daniella Alves Lima, 11 Angie Woznuk, 12 Elise Weber, 14 Melissa Tancredi (20 Ashlee Pistorius, 71), 17 Lori Chalupny, 19 Nikki Cross (5 Sheree Gray, 46)
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on May 04, 2009, 02:21:35 AM
Saint Louis Athletica tie Washington Freedom 3-3

WPS - Staff Report
3rd May 2009
Germantown, Maryland

Saint Louis Athletica's three goals weren't enough to keep the Washington Freedom from mounting a late-match attack, scoring two goals in the final 15 minutes to see the game end in a 3-3 tie.

Athletica got on the board first at the seven minute mark as Daniela knocked home a rebound off Freedom goalkeeper Spisak's save.  Washington's Sonia Bompastor tied the score in the 29th minute, but Daniela would have a chance to make it 2-1 late in the second half off a left-footed strike from 25-yards out. 

There was plenty of physical play, Abby Wambach taking the brunt of a lot of it. 

The rain appeared to make things difficult for both teams in the second half, but Aluko took advantage in the 69th minute and slipped the ball just beyond Spisak to put Athletica up 3-1.  On the restart, Athletica's Daniela went down with an injury and was forced to leave the match.

Things soon turned around for Washington as Lisa De Vanna scored a header off a selfless Abby Wambach pass in front of the goal.  And in the 90th minute, Bompastor scored the equalizer for the Freedom that will send Athletica home, winless once again.


Saint Louis Athletica:  1 Hope Solo, 6 Kia McNeill, 7 Lisa Stoia, 8 Tina Ellertson (19 Nikki Cross, 74), 9 Eniola Aluko, 10 Daniella Alves Lima (5 Sheree Gray, 83), 11 Angie Woznuk, 12 Elise Weber, 14 Melissa Tancredi (2 Kerri Hanks, 67), 17 Lori Chalupny, 21 Francielle Manoel Alberto.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 04, 2009, 04:18:05 AM
My friend from El Salvador had gotten to my house with his wife after the game started, and when he saw Abby Wambach take out Daniela, he jumped up and started yelling, "Red card! That's a damn red card!!" He said some other stuff in Spanish that I couldn't make out too well, but I got the jest of it. He was also highly impressed with Aluko's speed, and Daniela's goal from distance. I've gotten him into the WPS matches, and they are here every Sunday to watch with Misha and me.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Roberts on May 04, 2009, 10:22:51 PM
The commentators were getting angry with the physical defending on Abby Wambach, the first was a strong shoulder barge in my opinion and the 2nd was a mixture of a shoulder barge and a shove. They should watch some other national women's teams play like Sweden, they are proper physical!
It was sad to see Daniela get injured, she looks really exciting to watch, just like all the brazil ladies. Her 2nd goal was great.

Yay Aluko scored! I feared it wasn't coming as she kept impressing with her pace but being let down on her touch and her choice of pass. I'm hoping she can improve a lot in this league as England will love to have a pacey striker thats good in front of goal.

I've gotten him into the WPS matches, and they are here every Sunday to watch with Misha and me.
Nice work!
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 05, 2009, 01:12:50 AM
Aluko is super fast, for sure. I've only seen her play once before, and it was against the US during the WWC. She was speedy then, too, but darn!! She turned up the burners racing for the ball, and I'm suprised the Freedom defense didn't pass out from trying to keep up with her. I know I would've!!

I hope Daniela is going to be OK, and yeah, ole' Jenn and Mark were getting mad about Abby getting knocked around, but she's dealt with it for years. But it didn't look like Abby slipped on the wet pitch into Daniela to me. I am patiently waiting for the replay of the game tomorrow afternoon, and I have to say, I have found a new respect for STL. They were the only team that had no televised games til Sunday, and they were ferocious and darn well fierce. If Daniela isn't able to play for a while, Eniola's speed, "Chalupa"'s ability to lead and Hope Solo's keeping skills HAVE to lead the team. The Althletica defense needs to keep the other teams from getting set pieces and face to face shots with Solo. Hope can handle anything from distance, and she's unbeatable that way, but anything closer, she's vunerable. She always has been.   
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Roberts on May 05, 2009, 02:57:18 PM
I've just seen the replay of the Abby tackle and it doesn't look malicious, Daniela had a bad touch on the ball so it escaped from her and Abby saw a chance to get teh ball back, slid in but Daniela also went for the ball at the same time, got to it 1st and Abby went into her outstretched leg, ow! A big clumsy challenge basically, worth a yellow card but not a red I think.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 05, 2009, 08:23:23 PM
Daniela is out for the rest of the season. She has a cracked tibia and ligament damage. There was nothing in the report about surgery, so she probably just needs time, patience and a cast for them to heal. I watched Fox Football Fone-In on FSC last night, and the guys said that the WPS was going to look at the game again, and Abby could face suspension.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Roberts on May 05, 2009, 10:31:55 PM
Really, suspension?! Maybe I need to watch the replay again!!

Daniela must be gutted, as well as Athletica, Aluko is really going to feel the pressure now
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: shlj on May 05, 2009, 11:24:10 PM
I watched the video again, it is a two footed leg breaker  :o in England she would get away with nothing probably.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 06, 2009, 10:13:20 AM
She deserves suspension. There's nothing else to it. Abby Wambach, of ALL people, know how hard it is to try and return from a horrible accident on the field, and then to commit the foul that caused one? Ridiculous!! Sooo...I don't know if Abby had a flashback to the Brazil friendly before the Olympics or what...there is a great article at Goal.com about this. I'll post it at the WPS thread.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: shlj on May 06, 2009, 10:35:44 AM
There is a section in the law of the game about serious foul play page 119 :

"A tackle that endangers the safety of an opponent muts be sanctionned as serious foul play.
A player who is guilty of serious foul play should be sent off"
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Roberts on May 06, 2009, 04:26:10 PM
Statement from Wambach: “In regards to the injury Daniela sustained during our game, the thing I need to convey most is how hard it is for a player who has sustained a significant injury in the past year to now be on the other side of it,” Wambach said. “It’s been crucial for me to find out exactly what injuries Daniela has sustained because of how important I know she is to the Saint Louis franchise. I’ve been in contact with a close friend on the team to stay updated. Unfortunately soccer is a physical game and players do get injured. There was no intent on my side to cause any harm. I wish Daniela nothing but the speediest of recoveries. My thoughts and prayers are with her.”
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: shlj on May 06, 2009, 05:52:38 PM
Unfortunately soccer is a physical game and players do get injured. There was no intent on my side to cause any harm.
Regardless of the intent, injuring another player with a wild and dangerous tackle should be punished.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 06, 2009, 09:06:43 PM
Yes, it should! The commissioner had better make the right decision on this. If she doesn't, then how can the WPS truly be considered the best womens' league in the world? The best league would follow ALL rules, regardless of the superstar who broke them!!
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Roberts on May 07, 2009, 12:00:19 PM
But if all players were punished when they injured someone wouldn't that scare players to go in for the tackle.

I agree that she was hot headed and shouldn't have slid in but players get passionate about the game and thats what makes it such an exciting game to watch.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Roberts on May 07, 2009, 12:14:03 PM
WPS has issued the following statement after its review of the match:

"The League Disciplinary Committee has completed its review of a number of on-field incidents in the May 3, 2009, game between the Washington Freedom and Saint Louis Athletica. In the Committee’s collective opinion, none of them met the very specific criteria for over-ruling the decisions of the game referee, and therefore further disciplinary measures were not imposed.

However, the Commissioner may independently exercise her discretion to further review the match and assess penalties based upon conduct that is detrimental to the best interests of WPS, the integrity of its matches and the protection of its Players. The Commissioner has elected to and is in the process of reviewing the circumstances of the Freedom-Athletica match, and it is expected that she will announce the results of her review by the end of business on Thursday, May 7th. If, based on her review, the Commissioner determines that penalties are appropriate, such penalties may include fines, youth sports-oriented community service, or suspensions."
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: shlj on May 07, 2009, 12:21:44 PM
But if all players were punished when they injured someone wouldn't that scare players to go in for the tackle.
That would clean the game of bad and dangerous tackles.
I see every week players going at full steam without thinking of the possible consequences of their act.
And the worse are the referees not acting on it.

By the way it is funny that the disciplinary committee consider there is no mesure to be taken but the Commissioner can act above them?
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 08, 2009, 03:10:33 PM
There is a cute article with good pics about the Athletica at the St. Louis Cardinals game at Busch Stadium at the Athletica site.  :)
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: redrobin on May 09, 2009, 02:12:49 PM
Athletica acquire Fletcher and Welsh in trade with Sol

by Womensprosoccer.com
8th May 2009
St. Louis, Missouri
Athletica Head Coach and General Manager Jorge Barcellos announced today that Saint Louis Athletica of the new Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league have traded a conditional draft pick in 2010 and a first round draft pick in 2011 to the Los Angeles Sol in exchange for defender Kendall Fletcher and forward Christie Welsh.

"We had no choice due to Daniela’s injury so we had to make a change in the roster. We lacked a little bit of offense and we lacked physical play in the middle," said Barcellos. "Fletcher has a lot of potential and is a very physical player in the middle and Welsh is a player who shoots well from outside of the box. I hope they can contribute to what we are doing here in St. Louis."

Christie Welsh, 28 years old, joins Saint Louis Athletica after a distinguished career with the United States Women’s National Team. Welsh has been capped 39 times with the U.S. and has scored 20 goals over the span of her career. Welsh played collegiately at Penn State University where she scored 82 goals and added 52 assists in a sterling four-year career that saw her honored as the first ever four-time NSCAA All-American in the history of women’s collegiate soccer.

"I am very excited and looking forward to joining a great team and an outstanding organization," said Welsh. "I can definitely contribute on the offensive end and I know my role will become more specific once I begin training with the team."

Kendall Fletcher, 24 years old, will be rejoining her collegiate teammate Lori Chalupny. Fletcher and Chalupny were in the same class at the University of North Carolina and were members of the Tarheels undefeated 27-0-0 NCAA National Championship team in 2003. Fletcher and Chalupny, along with Athletica midfielder Angie Woznuk and forward Kerri Hanks, also played together with the 2002 U.S. Women’s U-19 National Team that won that years World Cup Championship in Canada.

"From a playing standpoint I am thrilled to be joining Saint Louis Athletica," said Fletcher. "I am really excited because I know a lot of the players here. They have had a slow start in terms of wins and losses but they are an extremely dynamic team."

"I think we acquired two world class players," said Athletica Captain Lori Chalupny. "I think Kendall Flecther is one of the best defenders in the United States and Christie Welsh is a powerful forward with a knack for burying her chances. I think they will certainly blend in with the team and help us in our goal of winning the WPS Championship."

The Sol will receive a conditional 2010 first-round draft pick and a 2011 first-round draft pick. The conditional 2010 first-round draft pick becomes a 2010 second-round draft pick if Athletica fail to finish the season as one of the top five teams in the WPS.

"We would like to thank both Kendall and Christie for their time with the Sol," said Los Angeles Sol General Manager Charlie Naimo. "While we are sad to see players of their talent and character leave, we feel that this trade provides us with a great opportunity to build for the future."

In addition to Fletcher and Welsh, Athletica received the Sol's second-round selection in the 2011 WPS Draft.

McNeill able to play for Athletica on Saturday

On Thursday evening, May 7, 2009, the WPS Commissioner suspended two players for one game each.  League policy provides that a player shall not play during the period of the appeal process unless the Commissioner, in her discretion, determines otherwise. 

One suspended player's team (Abby Wambach #20, Washington Freedom) does not have a game scheduled until after the seven-day appeal period, the second player's team (Kia McNeill #6, Saint Louis Athletica) has a game scheduled for Saturday, May 9.   

The Commissioner has determined that the one-day window between the Thursday-evening decision and the Saturday game is a unique and extenuating circumstance and will make a one-time exception to allow McNeill to play this weekend during the pendency of any appeal, should there be one.

Neither player has formally appealed to the league. They have until Thursday, May 14.

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 09, 2009, 10:21:50 PM
No team better than the Sol to make a swap with. Abner Rogers made sure he stacked his team with players who could go in, and pick up right where the player coming out left off. Kudos to Coach Barcellos!
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 10, 2009, 05:31:30 AM
:D  Athletica get their first win!!! Lori Chalupny nets a goal in the 16th minute, and STL holds on to beat FCGP!!
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: David on May 24, 2009, 12:42:55 PM
Athletica shut out Chicago

BRIDGEVIEW, ILL. — Missing five of their opening-day starters was no problem for the Athletica, who weathered a first-half attack from Chicago, controlled the second half and cruised to a 2-0 victory over the Red Stars on Saturday at Toyota Park.

Eniola Aluko, one of the Athletica's few internationals not away on national team duty, scored one goal and caused an own goal as the Athletica won their second straight game. Jillian Loyden, making her first appearance of the season filling in for Hope Solo in goal, had some nice saves as the Athletica held their opponent scoreless for the third time in four games. The win, which avenged the Athletica's loss to the Red Stars in their season opener, also pushed the Athletica into fifth place in the WPS.

Both teams had to jumble their lineups for the match because of Monday's United States-Canada friendly, with seven starters from the teams called in by the two nations. The Athletica lost three starters — Solo, midfielder Lori Chalupny and forward-defender Melissa Tancredi, who plays for Canada — while Chicago was missing four players. St. Louis was also without defender Kia McNeill, who was serving a one-game suspension stemming from its game with Washington on May 3, and midfielder Daniela, who is likely out for the season with a severe knee injury. It was a very makeshift lineup that coach Jorge Barcellos put on the field, not that you could tell by how the team played, especially in a dominant second half.

"I'm not saying we didn't miss Lori and Hope today," Aluko said, "but the players that came in for them were ready. We all performed as a group, and it's a testimony to the team that we're a strong squad."

No one was happier after the game than Loyden, who as the backup to Solo will see very little playing time. But in her first real match in nine months, she made six saves, including knocking two dangerous shots over the bar in the first half to preserve the shutout.

"She was amazing," Athletica defender Tina Ellertson said. "She came up with big saves at big moments. She was ready to step in. With Hope being gone, she was ready to step up and give a shot for us today, and she did."

"It was certainly a change of pace from practicing every day," Loyden said. "But the transition was so easy thanks to my teammates and the coaching staff and how much faith they've had in me the last two weeks. They gave me such confidence. I'm just on Cloud Nine I'm so excited."

Loyden admitted to some pregame jitters — "The girls just kept talking to me, 'Jill, you're going to be great, you're going to be fine, we have such faith in you,'" she said — but was cool in the match, especially in a first half when Chicago controlled the flow of play and had six shots and four corner kicks. The Athletica, meanwhile, had only a few offensive forays and were rewarded with two goals, which helped take some of the pressure off Loyden.

In the 26th minute, Aluko chased down a long ball outside the Chicago box, turned the corner on the defender and came in on Chicago goalie Caroline Jonsson along the end line. Aluko tried to cross the ball to teammate Kerri Hanks, but before it got there, the ball hit defender Ifeoma Dieke and bounced over Jonsson's head and into the goal.

Fifteen minutes later, Aluko put the ball in directly. Angie Woznuk, who took over playmaking duties in Chalupny's absence, played a ball into the box to Kendall Fletcher. Her shot was blocked and came right to Aluko, who easily scored from 8 yards out. It was her second goal of the season.

At the other end, Loyden was making the saves she had to, leaping to tip two dangerous shots over the bar and then grabbing another ball off a Chicago player's head.


Some photo's from the game here -

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: K_Lincourt30 on May 25, 2009, 03:20:28 AM
That was an EXCELLENT match yesterday. STL turned up the heat, and it paid off!! They were ready for whatever was thrown at them from the first whistle. Absolutely impressive.  :)
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: pat51 on June 29, 2009, 12:03:25 AM
St Louis winning 1-0 at half time with Eni Aluko scoring , she is up against Anita Asante playing for Sky Blue F C. Very good match so far.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: pat51 on June 29, 2009, 01:01:24 AM
FT Sky Blue 1 St Louis 2
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Rach_83 on June 29, 2009, 12:53:23 PM
St Louis winning 1-0 at half time with Eni Aluko scoring , she is up against Anita Asante playing for Sky Blue F C. Very good match so far.

Got to agree with you there Pat it was a very good match, probably one of the best WPS matches I've seen. Aluko is looking really good for St. Louis and Asante solid as always, bodes well for the Euros.

Do not understand why Kai was not subbed during the second half, know they were chasing the game, but they had all the possession and she was clearly injured. Impressive that she played on though and played a part in the goal.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: pat51 on June 29, 2009, 04:43:16 PM
Felt sorry for Sky Blue as they had most of the play and deservedly got level in the last quarter but were beaten by a complete fluke goal . Saint Louis competed well and Eni was always a good outlet player though she was offside a lot. Anita was really cool at the back, surely it will help our Euro chances to have half the team playing at such a high level week in week out. Kai seemed to be trying to convince the coach to take her off, without success! Its just a pity that the League is all but over with L A seventeen points clear....all the other teams seem evenly matched.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Rach_83 on June 29, 2009, 07:36:13 PM
Felt sorry for Sky Blue as they had most of the play and deservedly got level in the last quarter but were beaten by a complete fluke goal . Saint Louis competed well and Eni was always a good outlet player though she was offside a lot...... Its just a pity that the League is all but over with L A seventeen points clear....all the other teams seem evenly matched.

Yeh she was off a lot, including the goal maybe? they never showed a great angle of it to be sure. Yeh I can't see anyone beating LA even with the crazy American play off system, as all the decent players will be at the Euros  ;) except Marta of course.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Roberts on July 23, 2009, 07:14:42 PM
Aluko being offside a lot, thats not want I wanted to hear! Thats one of the reasons that makes her frustrating to watch. I didn't notice it so much in the few games I've watched tho so hopefully she is better.
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: David on May 29, 2010, 02:08:19 AM
Saint Louis Athletica to Shut Down

Financial Shortfall by Athletica’s Owner Forces Mid-season Close

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (May 27, 2010) – The Saint Louis Athletica in Women’s Professional Soccer are shutting down their franchise as a funding crisis has left the team without the necessary funds to operate for the 2010 WPS Season. The Athletica players will be available as free agents to other WPS teams as of Tuesday, June 1.

Just two weeks ago, the league learned of a cash flow shortage at St. Louis Soccer United – which includes the owner of the Saint Louis Athletica and a St. Louis men’s team – that threatened the remainders of both teams’ seasons. After a thorough and extensive review of the situation together with interested parties, which involved the League covering the funding shortfall for the Athletica’s last two player payrolls, the Athletica have folded their franchise. WPS will re-make the remaining schedule for the 2010 WPS season as a seven-team league – the same number that took part during the WPS Inaugural Season.

“It’s incredibly difficult to lose a team in mid-season like this,” said WPS Commissioner Tonya Antonucci. “We looked at a few options as a league together with our Board and U.S. Soccer, but the operational hurdles and finances just didn’t work out. In the face of a severe funding gap in St. Louis, the local ownership group is shutting down the team at this point.”

The rest of the 2010 WPS Schedule without Saint Louis Athletica will be revised and released next week. The previously completed six league games against Saint Louis will count in the standings and the Athletica will not play in this weekend’s previously scheduled game.

“This is a setback, but it’s one individual franchise and the loss of a team is an unfortunate reality of pro sports,” said Antonucci. “We’ll continue to have great games and an exciting season for our fans. The solid foundation that we built in 2009 is there. We have the same number of teams that we had last year during a successful first season. We’ll get through this stronger and keep moving the league and business forward.”

Saint Louis Athletica players will still be eligible for the 2010 WPS All-Star Game presented by the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve if they are rostered on another WPS team by Friday, June 11. As of June 1, Athletica players are no longer under club contracts and can sign with any team as free agents.

Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Hanna Ljungberg Fan on May 30, 2010, 05:38:52 PM
“Everybody (in WPS) sustained losses last year that were bigger than they expected. The Sol did no worse than anybody else, but they were just in a bad position that their owner said right up front they were in it for one year whether they lost zero dollars or the most you could think of. The lesson is you don’t let anybody into the league who is only in it for one year.”

Jeff Cooper 2 february 2010

no comment
Title: Re: St. Louis Athletica
Post by: Billy Hunt on May 31, 2010, 03:06:56 AM
devils advocate..? Bodes well for the super league maybe?