SEATTLE -- Five of the incoming freshmen for the Husky women's soccer team are already on campus (read about it here), but the remaining two players, Shannon Simon and Kimberly Keever had business to attend to. Instead of arriving at UW early, the teammates for Beach FC in Southern California were busy winning a national title at the club level.
Simon and Keever each scored four goals during the tournament in Germantown, Md., which tied for tops among any player. Simon was also voted as top player in the tournament earning the Golden Ball. In all, Beach FC outscored their opponents 17-0 for the tournament, including 2-0 wins over that last two national champions in the semifinals and finals.
"I could not have asked for a better way to end my club career," said Simon. "There is no feeling like winning a national championship. This is the biggest club tournament out there and to be named the best club team in the nation is a great honor. After the final whistle blew of the final game, I felt pure happiness; all of our hard work had finally paid off. Every team we played in the tournament brought different challenges to the game which made winning that much more meaningful. I am so proud to have been a part of this Beach team and family."
Despite the strong run from Beach FC, they were not the favorite going into the tournament.
"During Nationals, we were largely overlooked," said Keever. "People outside of California were not familiar with our team and style of play, so I felt as if we were considered underdogs. By the end of the tournament we had scored 17 goals and given up zero over five games. At that point, people did know our team's name. Getting to Nationals has been our goal each year. We've come close, but this was our first year making it past regionals. Winning Nationals seemed to culminate our club soccer careers perfectly. It was a nice end to a long run of 11 years of club soccer. I've been playing with some members of this team since U-9 and Shannon since U-13."
For both Simon and Keever it was a great ending to their club careers as they prepare to join the Huskies next week for the start of preseason.
"I am now ready for a new chapter at UW," said Simon. "I look forward to a new set of challenges to face with my fellow huskies by my side."
Winning a National Championship with my club team gave me a little taste of how sweet it would be to win a National Championship at the collegiate level with University of Washington," said Keever. I am so excited to get on campus!"
Husky head coach Lesle Gallimore is also excited to add her final two recruits, especially players that now come with national title experience.
"I’m extremely excited for Shannon and Kimby on their National Championship with Beach FC. They have worked long and hard with their club team to reach this pinnacle and it’s a great jumping off point for their careers at Washington. We can’t wait to have them join us for preseason and it is always a bonus to have players who understand a winning culture and know how to compete everyday."