As the college season only runs from August to November, many players play club soccer when not with their college teams. This off-season, several current College Matildas are playing club soccer at one place or another. Currently, two are at clubs in the US, whilst one is playing back in Australia.
In the US, Kahlia Hogg is playing for Colorado Rush in the USL W-League. This is Kahlia’s second stint in the W-League, after previously playing for Pali Blues. The Rush kicked off their season on May 19, winning 8-0 against local rivals Colorado Storm, with Kahlia picking up 2 goals and 2 assists in a demolition job. Tougher games are sure to come for the Rush, though, with teams such as Seattle Sounders Women and LA Blues (a merger of Pali Blues and LA Strikers) sure to provide much sterner tests in a stacked W-League Western Conference. The Rush’s next game, however, will be away to the Bay Area Breeze of northern California.
Further north, Anastasia McCleary has joined Issaquah Soccer Club of Seattle in the WPSL. Issaquah are an interesting club as they serve as the reserve team for the Seattle Reign of the NWSL, who currently lead the league. Of course, college eligibility rules mean Anastasia can’t actually play for the Reign first team, but she will be playing alongside many players in the Reign system. Issaquah’s WPSL campaign kicks off on May 31 at home to THUSC Diamonds, with the team playing 10 games in about 6 weeks before conference and then national playoffs. Issaquah qualified for the playoffs last season by topping their division, and will be hoping to do the same this year.
Closer to home, Kahlia Hogg’s Colorado teammate, Alexandra Huynh, will be spending her off-season playing for Marconi Stallions of the National Premier Leagues NSW Women’s 1. Alexandra already played in the side’s midweek exhibition game against a touring College of William and Mary side, and if she plays this weekend, will come up against a Macarthur Rams side that has only dropped points in one game this season; ironically, a draw against Marconi Stallions.
There are also three future College Matildas playing club soccer as they prepare for the move to the US. Georgia Rowntree is playing for Sydney University, and may yet come up against Alexandra Huynh as both sides play in NPLNSW Women’s 1. In NPLNSW Women’s 2, Maddy Cornell is starring on the left side for a Southern Branch side sitting in 3rd, just one point off second place. Meanwhile, north of the Tweed, Ellie Papalexiou is playing an instrumental role at both left back and left wing for Palm Beach, who currently lead the South-East Queensland Women’s Premier League. Palm Beach come up against University of Queensland this weekend in a top of the table clash. A win for Palm Beach will put them 4 points clear at the top of the table with 3 rounds to play, whilst a loss could see them drop to 3rd once other teams play their games in hand.
Good luck to all of our players this week! We’ll be back next week with all the results and a preview of upcoming games.