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NWSL News: Wave star Alex Morgan highlights NWSL Best XI squad


San Diego Wave star Alex Morgan and fellow U.S. Women’s National Team compatriots Sofia Huerta of OL Reign and Mallory Pugh of the Chicago Red Stars were named to the NWSL Best XI first team on Tuesday.

Morgan, a forward, won the Golden Boot with a career-best 15 goals while helping the expansion franchise reach the semifinals of the playoffs.

Huerta stood out on defense for OL Reign, while Pugh scored 11 goals as Chicago’s top forward.

Also making the first team were San Diego goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan; defenders Alana Cook (OL Reign), Naomi Girma (San Diego) and Carson Pickett (North Carolina Courage); midfielders Sam Coffey (Portland Thorns) and Lo’eau LaBonta (Kansas City Current); and forwards Debinha (North Carolina) and Sophia Smith (Portland).

Among the second-team selections were forward Megan Rapinoe and midfielder Rose Lavelle, both of OL Reign. They were joined by fellow U.S. national team player Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland).

All 22 players selected to either the first or second team will receive cash bonuses.

“Congratulations to all of the winners on this year’s Best XI teams,” NWSL commissioner Jessica Berman said in a statement. “The hard work, dedication and determination of each of these 22 players is what makes the NWSL so special, and I look forward to following along as they continue to take their game and this league to new heights.”

Portland and Kansas City meet in the NWSL title game on Sunday in Washington, D.C.

Best XI First Team

Goalkeeper: Kailen Sheridan (San Diego)

Defenders: Alana Cook (OL Reign), Naomi Girma (San Diego), Sofia Huerta (OL Reign), Carson Pickett (North Carolina)

Midfielders/forwards: Sam Coffey (Portland), Lo’eau LaBonta (Kansas City ), Alex Morgan (San Diego), Debinha (North Carolina), Mallory Pugh (Chicago), Sophia Smith (Portland)

Best XI Second Team

Goalkeeper: Adrianna Franch (Kansas City)

Defenders: Kelli Hubly (Portland), Hailie Mace (Kansas City), Tatum Milazzo (Chicago), Becky Sauerbrunn (Portland)

Midfielders/forwards: Kerolin (North Carolina), Jess Fishlock (OL Reign), Rose Lavelle (OL Reign), Diana Ordóñez (North Carolina), Megan Rapinoe (OL Reign), Ebony Salmon (Houston)

–Field Level Media









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