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January 18, 2018

Chicago Drafts Six for 2018 Season

CHICAGO – As the 2018 National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) College Draft comes to a close, the Red Stars drafted six, including two players from Cal and two local players. Here’s a recap of the Red Stars 2018 draftees:

Emily Boyd (Round 2, Pick 15)
University of California, Berkeley
Hometown: Seattle, Washington
Height: 5-9

The 2017 Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Year, Boyd started all 20 matches for the Golden Bears, leading the team to a 13-6-1 record. California also allowed the fewest number of regular season goals (9) in the Pac-12. She finished her senior year with 10 shutouts and a save rate of 88%.

In her time at Cal, Boyd holds the record for all-time saves (280+) and all-time shutout record (36).

Recently, Boyd was called into the first U.S. Under-23 WNT training camp of the new year.

Indigo Gibson (Round 2, Pick 18)
University of California, Berkeley
Hometown: Las Flores, California
Height: 5-8

Helping the backline concede the fewest goals (9) in the Pac-12, Gibson was selected as a MAC Hermann Semifinalist, being the first Cal player to be honored as a semifinalist since Alex Morgan.

A First-Team All-Pac-12 selection in 2017, Gibson played every minute in the regular season, helping the Golden Bears to a 13-6-1 record. She also led Cal to being one of three teams at the Division I level to hold opponents to one or fewer goals in every game of the regular season.

Recently, Gibson was calling into the first U.S. Under-23 WNT training camp of the new year, while also being part of the Canadian Youth National teams in the past.

Brianna Visalli (Round 2, Pick 19)
Pepperdine University
Hometown: San Jose, California
Height: 5-2

Starting all 21 games in her senior year, MAC Hermann Trophy Finalist, Visalli became the first ever Pepperdine player to be honored West Coast Conference (WCC) Player of the Year.

She led the WCC in points (34), goals (14), assists (tied with 6), game-winning goals (6) and shots (76) in 2017. Visalli also finished the year eighth in the nation in game-winning goals, 12th in total goals and 13th in total points.

Recently, Gibson was calling into the first U.S. Under-23 WNT training camp of the new year.

Megan Buckingham (Round 3, Pick 24)
University of North Carolina
Hometown: Novi, Michigan
Height: 5-5

ACC Freshman of the Year in 2014, Buckingham started the 13 games she played in, totaling 998 minutes in 2017. She earned two assists her senior year. Buckingham helped North Carolina to a 17-3-2 record, paving way to the Tarheels third-round run in the 2017 College Cup.

Buckingham finished her collegiate career with 10 goals and 10 assists.

Zoey Goralski (Round 3, Pick 27)
Hometown: Naperville, Illinois
Height: 5-3

A 2017 College Cup All-Tournament Team honoree, Goralski led her team to the finals of the tournament as co-captain in her final season at UCLA.

Goralski finished her time at UCLA playing 82 consecutive games, playing 88 of 90 games in her collegiate career, tallying three goals and 16 assists. She’s also earned UCLA Team Awards, including Defensive MVP (2015) and Rookie of the Year (2014).

Alexa Ben (Round 4, Pick 37)
DePaul University
Hometown: Schaumburg, Illinois
Height: 5-0

Two-time BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week, Ben finished her senior year starting all 19 matches for DePaul, scoring seven goals.

During her four years, Ben collected an array of accolades, including BIG EAST Rookie of the Year (2014), All-BIG EAST First Team (2015, 2016, 2017), BIG EAST Midfielder of the Year (2016), and earned a spot of the 2017 MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List.

Chicago traded its 29th pick for Portland Thorns natural Third-Round pick in the 2019 NWSL College Draft.

NWSL will open its 2018 season the weekend of March 24-25.


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