For the first time in program history, two members of the Kansas soccer team were selected in the National Women’s Soccer League draft after Katie McClure and Addisyn Merrick were picked Thursday afternoon.
McClure was taken with the 23rd overall pick by the Washington Spirit, while Merrick was the 28th selection to the North Carolina Courage. It marks the first time since 2010 that a KU player was drafted.
“I’m really excited for both of them,” KU head coach Mark Francis said in a team release. “For Katie and Addisyn, this is the culmination of great careers and great seasons but also a lot of hard work and dedication. This shows that if you have the ability and are prepared to put in the work, great things are possible, and that’s the story for both of them. They bought in and it’s paying dividends. I can’t wait to see them take their games to the next level.”
McClure, who was taken by Washington with the fifth pick in the third round, finished off her 2019 campaign with a career-high 17 goals to lead the Big 12 and was the second-most ever by Jayhawk in a single season. She tallied a career-high nine assists to add to her yearly point total of 43, which also led the conference. McClure ended her KU career with 39 goals, the second-most in program history.
Merrick, who was claimed by North Carolina with the first pick of the fourth round, was one of the nation’s top defenders this season. The Big 12’s Defender of the Year and an All-Big 12 First Team pick, Merrick played a team-high 2,278 minutes on the KU backline, a new program record. She anchored a KU defense that posted 11 shutouts, which was the second-most in program history.