Former KU soccer stars McClure, Merrick selected in NWSL College Draft

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BALTIMORE (WIBW) - After wrapping up historic careers with KU women's soccer, Katie McClure and Addisyn Merrick are taking their talents to the professional ranks.

The Washington Spirit selected McClure while the North Carolina Courage picked Merrick in the National Women's Soccer League College Draft on Thursday. McClure was a third-round pick while Merrick went in the fourth round. This marked the first time Kansas has had two players taken in the same draft and also the first a time any KU player had been selected since 2010.

“I’m really excited for both of them,” KU head coach Mark Francis said in a release. “For Katie and Addisyn, this is the culmination of great careers and great seasons, but also a lot of hard work and dedication.

"This shows that if you have the ability and are prepared to put in the work, great things are possible, and that’s the story for both of them. They bought in and it’s paying dividends. I can’t wait to see them take their games to the next level.”

McClure was the fifth pick of the third round. In her final season at KU, she led the Big 12 with a career-high 17 goals, the second-most ever by a Jayhawk in a single season. She leaves the program with 39 career goals, the second-most in program history.

The Courage took Merrick with the first pick of the fourth round. This past season, she was named the Big 12 Defender of the Year and played a team-high 2,278 minutes, which set a new program record.

McClure and Merrick were parts of the first class in program history to play in the second round of the NCAA Tournament three times. For the 2019-2020 season, they helped the Jayhawks win their first Big 12 Tournament championship, advance to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament and rack up the second-most single-season wins in program history (17).