Anthony Vasser/Houston Dash

Houston Dash defender Marissa Diggs announces retirement

Houston Dash defender Marissa Diggs today announced her retirement from professional soccer after one season in the NWSL.

"I want to thank the Dash for giving me the opportunity to play with such a great organization. The players, staff, and fans were great to me, and there was nowhere else I'd rather spend my rookie season,” Diggs said. “It was a very hard decision but I had to do what I thought was best for me. I'll be watching every game and cheering for my home state team. Go Dash!"

Diggs, 22, was a second round pick (No. 11 overall) in the 2014 NWSL College Draft. Diggs made 13 appearances (11 starts) and tallied one goal and one assist in her rookie season with the Dash.

“Though I’m disappointed to lose Marissa as a player for the Dash, I completely understand her decision to put her degree to work and move on to this next stage of her life,” Dash head coach Randy Waldrum said. “She will be missed for sure, as she was developing into a mainstay in our defense. I thought she had a great first year for us as a rookie, and was looking forward to year two with her in our defensive back line. I do want to wish her all the best in her new career, and I know that she’ll continue to be one of our biggest fans.”

The Rowlett, Texas, native was a four year starter at the University of Central Florida and graduated in December 2014 with a degree in Hospitality Management. Diggs led the Golden Knights to the school’s first conference championship in 2012 and repeated the feat in 2013, while winning conference Defensive Player of the Year honors in both seasons. She was also a two-time All-America selection and three-time first team All-Conference player.