United Women’s Soccer (UWS) announced plans to hold a pro-am tournament at the Round Rock complex in Texas.
The National Cup will provide an opportunity for teams to compete after the cancellation of the regular season.
The teams will take part in a nine-day tournament behind closed doors with all games available to stream online. It will run from July 9 – 17.
FC Austin general manager Danny Woodfill told Her Football Hub this was the first event of its kind.
“We have been here for six years and we have been trying to slowly grow the women’s game so to have the opportunity to do something like this, is bringing it all together and like another piece in promoting women’s soccer,” Woodfill said.
The 2020 UWS season was cancelled earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Unlike some leagues in Europe it has been unable to restart.
“We can all be out practicing, we can all be out training, we can be relatively unaffected but none of us will get to play because there are no other teams in our area,” Woodfill said.
This sparked the initial thoughts and conversations about the National Cup.
FC Austin Named Hosts
FC Austin head coach Jamie Mershaw said the Round Rock facility was the perfect location to showcase the sport.
“We talk all the time about doing something every year to try and make the environment even more professional,” he Mershaw said.
“So to be able to host an event like this in a quality facility, even though it isn’t the ‘real season,’ is still going to be a really awesome way for us to get to play teams we would never have a chance to play otherwise.”
The pro-am tournament has proven to be relatively popular so far with new teams registering every day.
Woodfill said FC Austin players had an extra “pep in their step” after they heard the only pro-am women’s national championship this year would be on their home soil.
UWS is a second-tier league in the United States and Canada and consists of regional conferences.
All teams are primarily made up college athletes but also include former and aspiring professionals.
Seven teams have confirmed their intent to play. This includes four teams from the state of Texas: Bat Country FC, CTX Hornets, Dallas International, and FC Austin Elite. Out of state teams include Lancaster Inferno (PA), Santa Clarita Blue Heat (CA) and Worcester Smiles (MA).