Tukwila, WA – The Sounders Women had five U.S. Women’s National Team players when the season began on April 9. Now, Keelin Winters has been called into USWNT Olympic Training Camp for a chance to become the 6th U.S National Team member on the Seattle Sounders Women.
Winters is one of 27 players who have been called into the training camp in Bradenton, Florida. The camp begins on April 18. For Keelin, this is her 5th time being called into train with the U.S. National Team. However, with the Olympics just 100 days away, it’s the closest to a major international tournament she’s ever been.
“In November, my first camp with the national team, I experience how much your game has to rise,” Winters said. “It’s a whole another level. My game rose to a level that I’ve never experienced. The speed of play is so much faster.”
The Sounders midfielder has had a chaotic month. She has spent time in Seattle with the Sounders, but also in Germany as she pursued a professional contract in the German Bundesliga. Her professional contract in Germany will start on July 1, 2012. She will play for the Sounders until then. Returning the night before the Sounders vs. Seattle University game, Winters scored a goal and played 90 minutes with heavy jet-lag.
Winters said, “The past 2 weeks have been pretty busy after being in Seattle, then over to Germany for a trial, then back to Seattle to play against Seattle U. It’s definitely been a little bit of a whirl wind. I think my body clock is out of whack, but it’s good.”
Now in Florida, Keelin and her Sounders Women teammates have been the buzz of training camp thus far, as their USWNT teammates ask about the start of the Sounders Women season.
“All the girls here (with the USWNT) are asking how the game went,” Winters said just an hour before the first practice in Florida. “It’s cool to tell people here that we had 4,000 plus for just exhibition matches… 4,000 is above average attendance at WPS, so all the girls are a little surprised and excited for what it means for women’s soccer that we are getting these fairly big crowds out to watch.”
The U.S. is in Florida strictly to train as its next match isn’t until May 27 when the team faces China at PPL Park in Chester, Pa. This current camp runs from April 18-30. Below is the roster for the camp.
Goalkeepers: Nicole Barnhart, Ashlyn Harris, Jill Loyden, Hope Solo (Seattle Sounders)
Defenders: Rachel Buehler, Stephanie Cox (Seattle Sounders), Whitney Engen (Pali Blues), Meghan Klingenberg, Amy LePeilbet, Heather Mitts, Kelley O’Hara, Christie Rampone, Becky Sauerbrunn (DC United)
Midfielders: Shannon Boxx, Tobin Heath (NY Fury), Lori Lindsey (Western New York Flash), Carli Lloyd, Kristie Mewis (Boston College), Heather O’Reilly (Boston Breakers), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Sounders), Amy Rodriguez, Keelin Winters (Seattle Sounders)
Forwards: Lauren Cheney, Sydney Leroux (Seattle Sounders), Alex Morgan (Seattle Sounders), Christen Press (Göteborg FC), Abby Wambach