Whitney Church NWSL Draft Profile

Whitney Church NWSL Draft Profile

Whitney Church, Senior, D, Penn State



Whitney Church entered Penn State as the No. 2 ranked defender in the country and 10th-best player in the 2011 class by TopDrawerSoccer.com. She made 26 appearances for Penn State during the 2011 season with 15 starts coming in the midfield. Church collected three points (1G, 1A) and earned All-Big Ten Freshman Team honors. She started all 27 games for the Nittany Lions in 2012, upping her point total to seven (3G, 1A). Church was selected to the All-Big Ten First Team and was named Big Ten Defender of the Year. Despite her defensive presence, Church started the 2013 season with an offensive bang. She scored two goals, including the game winner in double overtime, in Penn State’s conference opener against Northwestern. Church earned Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week honors and went on to record nine points (4G, 1A) for the season.

Church lacks size and top-end speed, but she manages to contain opponents in 1 v 1situations and doesn’t give them a lot of space to work with. She regularly supports teammates on both sides of her, often acting as a last line of defense between the opposing ball handler and the keeper. Church also displays nice footwork at times and can help build out of the back with her reliable passing game.


Final Projection:

There are bigger, faster, and more offensive-minded backline players available in this draft, but Church’s strengths are her dependability and consistency. As a result, teams looking for these attributes should have a keen interest in her.


See All NWSL Draft Profiles