Avon native Kia McNeil is playing soccer in the U.S. again. McNeil, a two-time All-State soccer player at Avon High, is playing with the Boston Breakers of the new National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL).
The NWSL has replaced Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) that folded after the 2011 season. McNeill played with three teams in the WPS. She was drafted by St. Louis and played one season (2009) before getting traded to Atlanta, playing one season in 2010. She signed with Philadelphia as a free agent in 2011 and helped the Spirit win the WPS championship.
McNeill has been an assistant coach at Boston College, where she played collegiate soccer, since 2009. She is part of the 18-woman roster with the Breakers that includes three-time Olympic gold medalist Heather Reilly at midfield and Cat Whitehill at defender. Outstanding Canadian forward Sydney Leroux is on the team.
The Breakers play their home games at Dilboy Stadium in Somerville, Mass.
McNeill, 26, will be playing defense for the Breakers. “Our defense is anchored by two of the best center backs in the league in Kia McNeil and Cat Whitehill,” Breakers coach Lisa Cole. “So, overall, I am pleased with where we are going into the start of the season.”
Boston tied its season opener with Washington, 1-1 before a sellout crowd of 2,634 at Dilboy Stadium. Leroux scored in the 91st minute to help the Breakers earn the tie. McNeill started and played the entire game.
Boston’s second game at Kansas City on April 20 was postponed because the Breakers couldn’t get out of town due shutting down of the city and several area towns searching for one of the suspects in the Boston Marathon bombings on April 19. That game was rescheduled for July 24.
The Breakers improved to 1-0-1 with a 2-1 win over Western New York this weekend with McNeill playing all 90 minutes. Boston gave up six shots on goal.
In 2010, McNeil and the Atlanta Beat played at Willow Brook Park in New Britain in a game against the Breakers in the WPS. Nothing like that is scheduled for this year.
Tickets are available by visiting www.breakerstickets.com or by calling 617-945-1704.
All times Eastern Standard Time
Saturday, May 4 vs CHICAGO RED STARS, 6
Saturday, May 11 at Washington Spirit (Maryland SoccerPlex, Boyds, Md.), 7
Saturday, May 18 at FC Kansas City (Shawnee Mission North High School, Overland Park, Kan.), 7:35
Saturday, May 25 vs WASHINGTON SPIRIT, 7
Saturday, June 1 at Sky Blue FC (Yurcak Field, Piscataway, NJ), 7
Wednesday, June 5 vs WESTERN NY FLASH, 7
Sunday, June 9 at Chicago Red Stars (Benedictine University Sports Complex, Lisle, Ill.), 3
Sunday, June 16 vs SKY BLUE FC, 6:30
Monday, July 24 at FC Kansas City
Wednesday, June 26 vs SEATTLE REIGN FC, 7
Sunday, June 30 vs SKY BLUE FC, 6:30
Wednesday, July 3 at Seattle Reign (Starfire Sports Complex, Tukwila, Wash.)., 7
Saturday, July 6 at Portland Thorns FC (JELD-WEN Field, Portland, Ore.), 7:30
Saturday, July 13 at Sky Blue FC (Yurcak Field, Piscataway, NJ), 7
Sunday, July 21 vs PORTLAND THORNS FC, 4
Saturday, July 27 at Washington Spirit (Maryland SoccerPlex, Boyds, Md.), 7
Saturday, August 3 vs WESTERN NY FLASH, 6
Wednesday, August 7 vs PORTLAND THORNS FC, 7
Saturday, August 10 vs FC KANSAS CITY, 6
Saturday, August 17 at Western NY Flash (Sahlen’s Stadium, Rochester, N.Y.), 7:35