03/17/2015 2:50 PM
The Western New York Flash announced today that the club has signed Abby Dahlkemper, Samantha Mewis, Lynn Williams and Jaelene Hinkle, its top four draft picks in this year’s College Draft. Per team and league policy, terms of the contracts were not disclosed.
“All four of our first round picks will play a big role and are an integral part of this season. We’re thrilled about them and the potential they’ve shown us already into preseason,” said Flash general manager and head coach Aaran Lines. “We’re excited about continuing to give young players opportunities. In 2013 for example, we had a rookie goalkeeper who did a fantastic job for us. We believe in these players and are excited to continue to develop them at the professional level.”
A highly-touted defender out of UCLA, Dahlkemper was selected with the Flash’s first pick in the 2015 Draft, No. 3 overall. Mewis, a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team pool, was selected No. 4 overall with the Flash’s second pick.
Both players join the Flash fresh off a Championship season with UCLA, as the Bruins hoisted the 2014 Women’s College Cup trophy in the fall.
Dahlkemper earned numerous additional accolades throughout her four years, including All-Pac-12 First Team and NSCAA All-Pacific Region honors each year. In her senior year, Dahlkemper was honored as the Pac-12 Defender of the Year and, the year prior, was named the NSCAA Scholar All-America Player of the Year. She was also a four-year NSCAA All-American honors winner and a finalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy in 2013 and semifinalist in 2014.
Mewis’ name has also been tied to college soccer’s coveted award, as she was a finalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy this year. In her senior season, the Massachusetts native was named espnW’s National Player of the Year, Pac-12 Player of the Year, First Team NSCAA All-American and First Team All-Pacific Region. Mewis was named to All-Pac-12 teams each year of her college career.
Both players have won the Honda Award, Dahlkemper in 2013 and Mewis in 2014, which is presented by the Collegiate Women Sports Awards (CWSA) to the top female soccer player and signifies “the best of the best in collegiate athletics”.
Williams, who was selected with the Flash’s third pick (6th overall), left Pepperdine as the program’s leader in a number of statistical categories. At the end of her tenure, Williams ranked first in assists (24), game-winning goals (15) and shots (398). She also was second in all-time points (102).
In her senior year, the forward led Pepperdine with 14 goals and 10 assists en route to an NCAA Sweet 16 appearance. The Fresno, Calif. native earned three-straight All-WCC first team honors after finishing on the second team in her freshman year. After a junior season that was cut short by injury, Williams was named NSCAA All-West Region first team, her second-straight year earning the accolade.
Hinkle, out of Texas Tech University, was taken with the Flash’s fourth pick of the 2015 First Round (7th overall). A native of Denver, Hinkle earned All-America honors twice and was the first Lady Raider to be named Big-12 Scholar Athlete of the Year.
In 84 career appearances with Texas Tech, Hinkle scored one goal and assisted on 19 while playing left back.
All four players featured in the Flash’s first preseason match on Saturday against West Virginia. Mewis scored the game’s opening goal, while Williams and Hinkle connected for the fourth and final score of the game. Hinkle finished with two assists while Dahlkemper played 90 minutes at center back. The Flash shutout the Mountaineers 4-0.
The Flash continues preseason on Saturday, March 28 when the team hosts Syracuse University at Sahlen Sports Park. The game is free to all fans and will kickoff at 10:30 a.m.
Season, Mini and Flex-8 ticket packages are currently on sale at wnyflash.com or by calling the Flash at (716) 655-PLAY or Sahlen’s Stadium Box Office at (585) 454-KICK.
Date of Birth: 05/13/1993
Birthplace: Menlo Park, California
Previous club: UCLA (NCAA)
How acquired: Selected with the Flash’s first pick (No. 3 overall) in the 2015 NWSL College Draft
Date of Birth: 10/09/1992
Birthplace: Hanson, Massachusetts
Previous club: UCLA (NCAA)
How acquired: Selected with the Flash’s second pick (No. 4 overall) in the 2015 NWSL College Draft
Date of Birth: 5/21/1993
Birthplace: Fresno, California
Previous club: Pepperdine (NCAA)
How acquired: Selected with the Flash’s third pick (No. 6 overall) in the 2015 NWSL College Draft
Date of Birth: 5/28/1993
Birthplace: Denver, Colorado
College: Texas Tech
Previous club: Texas Tech (NCAA)
How acquired: Selected with the Flash’s fourth pick (No. 7 overall) in the 2015 NWSL College Draft