San Diego now has its very own National Women’s Soccer League team: San Diego Wave, that includes many big name players such as the U.S. Women’s National Team’s Alex Morgan and Abby Dahlkemper on the roster. The club is owned by Ron Burkle and operated by former U.S. Women’s National Team coach Jill Ellis.
The club is believed to be one of the first professional sports run almost entirely by women. Between Ellis, Chief Revenue Officer Vanessa Shay, Marketing Director Ali Williams, and head Coach Casey Stony.
The club then went on to create their entire roster during the off season, while continuing to add before and after the NWSL expansion draft, where they had a total of five picks, passing on two, and trading one of three players they selected. With that, they ultimately came away with four newcomers. Prior to the draft, The Wave made numerous deals in order to acquire nine other players.
According to CBS, Jill Ellis believes that the addition of this team will be a very special moment for the San Diego community and she is excited to welcome players that she has previously coached to the team, like Alex Morgan.
“As a Southern California native, I am excited to be making a long-term commitment to Wave FC and the city of San Diego. I am coming home to partner with this ambitious new club and to push the league forward for generations of soccer players to come,” Morgan said.
The team recently played their first home game against Portland Thorns FC for the NWSL Challenge Cup. At Torero Stadium, in front of a sellout crowd of 6,000 at the University of San Diego.
According to CBS8, the game resulted in a 0-1 loss for the San Diego Wave, after Sophia Smith of the Portland Thorns scored a goal in the fifth minute of the game. After receiving a pass from Natalia Kuikka, Smith shot in front of the net from six yards out past goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan.
“We know we’re a team that’s growing and that we have only been together for eight weeks and tonight was a good performance, but it’s definitely not good enough,” Sheridan said.
The city of San Diego cannot wait to see what this team has in store in the next few weeks and the rest of the season.