Breaking down the draft: 2011

(Jan. 8, 2016) - As the 2016 National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) College Draft nears, we take a look back at past Boston Breakers drafts. Today, we head back to 2011, the final year of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS). We're recapping every draft from 2009 through 2015 leading up to the 2016 NWSL Draft on Jan. 15, 2016, which will be held at the annual NSCAA Convention, taking place this year in Baltimore.

(Jan. 8, 2016) - As the 2016 National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) College Draft nears, we take a look back at past Boston Breakers drafts. Today, we head back to 2011, the final year of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS). We're recapping every draft from 2009 through 2015 leading up to the 2016 NWSL Draft on Jan. 15, 2016, which will be held at the annual NSCAA Convention, taking place this year in Baltimore.

The 2011 WPS Draft wasn’t the final WPS Draft, however, it was the final season of WPS, which folded shortly after the 2012 WPS Draft. Unlike the previous two WPS drafts, the 2011 version was much smaller, with the Breakers holding four picks in the four-round draft. Even though 2010 produced one of the greatest drafts in sports history, 2011 ranks right up there in women’s soccer drafts with the likes of No. 1 overall pick Alex Morgan (Western New York), No. 2 Sinead Farrelly (Philadelphia), and No. 3 Meghan Klingenberg (Washington). The latter later became members of the Breakers – Klingenberg during the 2011 WPS season and Farrelly during the 2015 NWSL offseason.

The Breakers had the No. 6 overall pick in the 2011 WPS Draft, and then-head coach Tony DiCicco went with a familiar face with his top choice. Portland midfielder Keelin Winters captained DiCicco’s U.S. U-20 Women’s National Team, helping to lead the U.S. to gold at the 2008 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Chile.

Keelin Winters scored four goals in her rookie season of 2011

Winters had a phenomenal rookie season for the Breakers and wasted little time making her mark. She scored just 23 minutes into her debut, a 4-1 win over the Atlanta Beat on April 10, 2011. She finished the year with four goals and two assists in 19 games. She played the second-most minutes on the team (1,517).

The Breakers also selected Oklahoma forward Whitney Palmer (Round 2, No. 12 overall), Harvard forward Katherine Sheeleigh (Round 3, No. 19), and UC Irvine forward Tanya Taylor (Round 4, No. 24 overall).

In 2012, WPS held its draft, but just weeks later, the league folded. The Breakers had the No. 3 overall pick in 2012 and chose San Diego forward Stephanie Ochs, followed by UNC forward Courtney Jones (No. 11 overall), Oklahoma defender Melinda Mercado (No. 16 overall), and Boston University midfielder Jess Luscinski (No. 20 overall). Despite WPS folding, the Breakers continued on in the WPSL Elite. Both Jones and Luscinski were members of that team. Mercado returned in 2013, via a trade with the Western New York Flash. She made one appearance for the Breakers in 2013.

Check back Monday for a recap of the Breakers’ 2013 NWSL College Draft.

2011 WPS Draft

Round 1

No. 6 Keelin Winters Midfielder Portland

Round 2

No. 12 Whitney Palmer Forward Oklahoma

Round 3

No. 19 Katherine Sheeleigh Forward Harvard

Round 4

No. 24 Tanya Taylor Forward UC Irvine

 

2012 WPS Draft*

Round 1

No. 3 Stephanie Ochs Forward San Diego

Round 2

No. 11 Courtney Jones Forward UNC

Round 3

No. 16 Melinda Mercado Defender Oklahoma

Round 4

No. 20 Jessica Luscinski Forward Boston University

*WPS folded shortly after the draft

Official Partners

Steward

Lifetime

Nike

Cutter

JetBlue

MPT

Dunkin

Go90

SouthernNH

Thorne

TCG

Sweat

Dev Academy