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NWSL Draft: Quote Sheet - Jan. 18, 2013

NWSLNWSL College Draft
NSCAA Convention Indianapolis, Ind.
Jan. 18, 2013

Chicago Red Stars Draft Pick Zakiya Bywaters
On how it feels to be the No. 1 pick in the NWSL:
“I’m just very excited and honored. I’m really excited to be here and honored to be the No. 1 pick. I’m very grateful that the Chicago Red Stars have chosen me to be on their team.”

On whether there was a preference on where she wanted to go:
“I didn’t have a preference. I just wanted to be in an environment in which the team wanted me to be there and I think I’ll thrive with being wanted and being in an environment where everyone is helping me out so I can become a better soccer player.”

On what Chicago fans can expect from her:
“They’re going to get a lot of passion, a lot of speed, very quick and creative. I think I’ll bring a lot of excitement to the game.”

On whether she was surprised to be the top pick:
“I’m very surprised. I was very excited when Rory [Dames] gave me the call to let me know. I’m still kind of in shock with the whole experience but I’m really looking forward to playing in a professional environment that’s going to help me grow and for me to help the program, as well.”

Washington Spirit Draft Pick Tiffany McCarty
On when she found out she was the No. 2 pick and what her reaction was:
“I was following along on the Twitter page and my friend actually called me before I even knew because I didn’t refresh the page, so, through my friends. I was very excited. I grew up there and it will be kind of a blessing playing at the SoccerPlex.”

On playing at home and what she brings to the field:
“I think the Spirit will be a good team. My family is also excited that I’m going back home and I know a lot of people in Maryland. I feel like it’s going to be a really good experience for me.

“Going to Florida State the past four and a half years, we play a possession -oriented style but I also like to get in behind the defense and I think I’ve added a lot of things to my game over the years. My heading game has gotten better, my long-distance shots have gotten better, so I think I can play possession-style or over-the-top if need be. That’s what I bring to the table.”

FC Kansas City Draft Pick Kristie Mewis
On how it feels to go up against some of the National Team players when she takes the field:
“It feels awesome just because I’ve been playing with Becky [Sauerbrunn], [Lauren] Cheney and Nicole Barnhart for probably about a year now just because I’ve been in and out with the National Team. I absolutely love them as players. I love Becky, I think she’s such a great defender and she’s so possession-oriented and just so quick and fast. Lauren Cheney is probably my favorite midfielder that I’ve ever played with. I love her style and the way that she plays. Of course, Nicole Barnhart is a great goalkeeper and I’m so excited that I get a chance to play with some of the players that I really idolize.”

On her thoughts when she heard she was going to Kansas City:
“I was excited. I don’t really know too much about Kansas City. I’ve never really visited out in the Midwest or lived there in my life. It’s going to be a change, it’s going to be new and I think that’s really good for me. I think it will be good for me to be a little bit uncomfortable in a situation just to grow and experience something new. I’m actually really excited to be going to Kansas City.”

On what Kansas City fans can expect from her:
“I don’t really know what position I’ll be playing there but I’m going to bring everything that I can. Hopefully I can use my strengths. I can shoot really well. I have a pretty good cross. My distribution is good and I think that I’ll be able to connect with the midfielders and the forwards in the attack. Hopefully I’ll bring my ‘A’ game and I hope the fans really like me. I think it’s going to be a lot of fun. I hear that the Kansas City fans are one of the best, so I’m really excited.”

On her favorite position:
“Anywhere in the attack, really. I like outside midfield, I like attacking midfield, I can play outside forward. Pretty much anywhere in the attack is my favorite.”

On her thoughts about having the opportunity to play as a professional in the United States:
“I think it’s amazing. I can’t wait and I’m really excited that U.S. Soccer decided to have a league this year. I was really hoping for it. Of course overseas would be a great experience and maybe in the future I’ll get a chance to do that but I really wanted to stay in the United States and play in front of the fans because I think this league is going to be the best one yet and I’m so excited to be a part of it. I think it’s going to be awesome.”

On what advice she gives to all the young girls playing youth soccer who want to grow up to be female soccer stars:
“I think they should keep working hard; that’s what I did. Just do stuff on your own and keep busy. Play as much as you can when you’re younger because those are the best years of your life and that’s really when you improve, is when you’re younger and when you’re having so much fun with all your friends. I think the most important thing is to have fun with it and if you have a goal in life and you want to play professionally, then you can do it. When I was younger, that’s exactly what I wanted to do; I wanted to play professional soccer and now I finally get a chance to do it with Kansas City.”

Sky Blue FC Draft Pick Lindsi Lisonbee-Cutshall
On reaction to being drafted:
“I got a ton of texts and phone calls from my coaches and friends the second it happened so I heard it first from them and I was super excited as anyone would be, to be a fourth (overall) draft pick is super exciting. I woke up my husband to tell him and he was so excited, he went from silence to yelling and telling me how exciting that was and how excited he was for me and just thought it was a great honor to be the No. 4 draft pick so there’s a lot of excitement in my house right now.”

 

On moving her life and husband across the country to play for Sky Blue FC:
“I’m familiar with the area and I’ve been out there a handful of times but we’re excited to move where ever, I think it will be a great place for both of us.”

On playing with and against gold medal winning members of the U.S. Women’s National Team:
“It’s super exciting. I’ve never had a chance like this before and its super rewarding to think that I could play with and against them and it’s a great honor to be able to do so.”

On being teammates with longtime National Team defender Christie Rampone:
“There’s a ton to learn from her obviously, she’s so incredible, so composed, such a great leader and she’s so incredibly skilled. I think that I can learn from her in every aspect of the game and it’ll be exciting to do so.”


Boston Breakers Draft Pick Casey Short
On playing for Lisa Cole and playing with U.S. National Team defender Heather Mitts:
“It’s such an incredible opportunity, it’s a dream come true. I’ve always dreamed of playing professionally and playing for such a great coach, I’m just really looking forward to this opportunity and to be playing with some of the best players in the country that I’ve looked up to all my life I’m just so blessed and excited for this opportunity.”

 

On familiarity with Lisa Cole’s coaching style:
“I’m not too familiar, I don’t know too much about it yet but I’m looking forward to trying to fit right in.”

On how she describes herself as a player:
“I’ve played all different positions throughout my college career but I would say I’m an attacking player and I like to go one v one.”

On the history and fan base of the Boston Breakers:
“It’s very exciting to be able to play in that environment with such a great fan base and so much history, I’m so excited to be a part of it.”

“I’ve only been to Boston to play Boston College for school but I’m excited to see the city, everyone’s been telling me it’s such a great city, it’s beautiful so I’m looking forward to that.”

On playing alongside Sydney Leroux:
“I’m excited to play with her, I played with her in the U-20 World Cup and it was a great experience so I’m certainly looking forward to playing with her again.”

On what she thinks is her best position:
“My favorite position is outside back even though I don’t have much experience at it, I just started playing there this last college season. But I’d say I’m the most comfortable there and I definitely learned a lot this season, because I like to get into the attack but also come back and defend.”

“I think playing all these positions has certainly helped me to read the game because I know the midfielder’s mentality, the forward’s mentality, some the things going through their heads so it certainly helps me having those experiences.”

Western New York Draft Pick Adrianna Franch
On whether she had any inclination that she would be drafted so high or that Western New York was interested in picking her:
“I was talking to my college coach, Colin Carmichael, and we were trying to discuss and trying to figure out what team I would be going to and the probabilities of everything. We knew that Western New York was definitely an option. It so happened to be true and we are just really excited about it.”

On what she knows about the Western New York Flash:
“They are a very strong team that plays together and knows how to win. It’s an environment that I’m really excited to be around because they have a lot of drive and heart.”

On how she feels about being a teammate of Abby Wambach and Carli Lloyd:
“I’m excited. I was in camp with the full team before they went to the Olympics and those are two players that I really enjoyed meeting. Carli Lloyd was very nice and supportive, and so was Abby. I’m so excited to be possibly playing with them.”

On what she thinks will be the biggest challenge for her as a rookie playing with veteran players:
“Just being able to go in and perform the way I know how and also to take as much from them as I can, just learn and be a sponge.”

On when she decided to focus on soccer and whether she has always been a goalkeeper:
“I was a goalkeeper when I was about 13. I did basketball, softball and soccer. As I continued with that it just became soccer and basketball in high school. I committed to Oklahoma State but there was still talk about playing basketball at Oklahoma and then I tore my ACL my senior year so I decided to just play soccer. Then I got called to the National Team so basketball wasn’t an option anymore and I’m definitely okay with that. The question was whether I was going to play basketball or soccer, which was the sport that I couldn’t live without and soccer it was.”

On what her strengths are as a goalkeeper:
“A lot of people talk about my athleticism but this league is full of athletes. I would say my presence in the box, and my communication skills are getting a lot better. Those are two good things. When it comes to claiming balls in the air, having that presence in that aspect is something I would say is good.”

On having the opportunity of playing professionally in the United States:
“That’s what is so exciting about it. We have all these players, all these national teams that are coming together in this league. It’s definitely a great opportunity to continue moving forward in my path and hopefully getting invited and making the [Women’s National] team. Playing with Abby and Carli is really exciting and will hopefully help me down the road.”

Seattle Reign Draft Pick Christine Nairn
On going to Seattle:
“I’m very excited to go to Seattle, I’m a huge MLS fan so I could not be more excited and more thrilled to be going to such a soccer fanatic city. I just got off the phone with my Dad and I think he’s even more excited than me, that I’m going to such a great soccer community and to represent the Reign as best I can for as long as I can. So I can’t say I’d rather be going to another place, I’m just thrilled for the opportunities ahead and what I can do there.”

 

“I couldn’t be more happy to be drafted by Seattle and represent that club with honor and hard work and hopefully we get a championship in our first year.”

On playing for former Arsenal coach Laura Harvey:
“Erica Walsh (Penn State head coach) definitely had good things to say about her and what she’s done for that Arsenal program, I’ve done my research and everybody says she’s one of a kind. I’m excited to be coached by her and to learn a lot of things on the European aspect of my game, which I can always improve.”

On being a professional in the United States:
“It’s a great opportunity to represent Seattle and where I come from, Penn State and all the teams that I’ve played for. To be able to represent them on a professional stage is a dream come true. I’m excited to get to work, it’s a new adventure and to be considered a pro athlete in any sport, everyone dreams of that and I’m lucky enough to live that dream everyday come March.”

On who she is as a player:
“I played in college as an attacking mid, dominantly left-footed, I can shoot, I can pass but what’s most important to me is making the players around me better cause they in turn make me better every day, that’s what I tried to do at Penn State and it got us to the national championship this year.”

On how she’ll mess with the National Team players on the Seattle roster:
“I’ve played a little bit with the senior team since I’ve been in school and I’ve grown up playing with Teresa [Noyola] since we were 14-years-old so I think I mesh very well with those seven players. They’re possession oriented especially Teresa and Pinoe (Megan Rapinoe), I think I fit in perfectly with that team.”

On thrill of being professional soccer player:
“My voice is quivering I’m sure you can tell, I’ve grown up with soccer, with my two brothers and everybody kind of laughing at me at ‘I want to be a professional women’s soccer player’ at that time it wasn’t really in the works. A lot of the girls in the draft, we always said we wanted to be a part of a professional women’s soccer league and today’s the day that our dreams come true. I can’t be more thrilled to represent where I come from, the east coast, Maryland, Penn State, they’ve given me this opportunity to become my dream, which is to be a professional athlete.”

“I’m going to grab this by the horns and ride this as long as I can because it’s a dream come true and I think if you ask all the girls that got drafted today they’re just as excited to start the NWSL as much as I am.”

 

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