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Houston Dash select five players in 2018 NWSL College Draft

The Dash selected forwards Kimberly Keever and Veronica Latsko; midfielders Abby Elinsky and Haley Hanson; and goalkeeper Sarah Shimer today at the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) College Draft. Prior to making a selection, Houston traded the No. 6 overall pick to and two players to be named later to the Chicago Red Stars for the No. 7 overall pick, an international roster spot and a player to be named later.

“This was my first draft and a very memorable experience,” Dash Head Coach Vera Pauw said. “We wanted to find balance and we selected a lot of good players who can bring a lot to this team. I really want to thank Lisa Cole, Brian Ching and Chris Canetti for their contributions today. We were a team that was well prepared to adjust as players came off the board –overall I felt that we were ready and it showed.”

Pauw selected Hanson, 21, with the seventh overall selection from the University of Nebraska. The midfielder scored 19 goals and tallied seven assists over her four-year career with the Cornhuskers. The Shawnee, Kansas native was to the United Soccer Coaches All-Midwest Region Second-Team, Second-Team All-Big Ten, U.S. U-23 Women's National Team Training Camp in 2017.

Keever, the No. 12 overall pick, was drafted from the University of Washington. The forward finished her collegiate career with 22 career goals, including 11 game-winning goals, in 79 games. The Santa Monica, Calif. native was named to the All-Pac 12 Freshman Team in 2014, All-Pac 12 second team in 2015 and 2016, and the All-Pac 12 third team in 2017.

Latsko, 22, was selected by Houston with the No. 38 overall pick after a four-year collegiate career at the University of Virginia. The forward was named to the All-ACC First Team and All-ACC Tournament Team during her senior year in 2017.  Latsko was a 2014 NCAA National Championship finalist and an ACC Championship finalist in 2014 and 2015.

Elinsky was selected with the last pick of the third round after a three-year career at the University of North Carolina. The midfielder was named as an All-ACC Tournament top 11 player in 2017 as the Tar Heels qualified for the postseason and finished with a 17-3-2 record.

Shimer led the Pac-12 conference in shutouts with 11 in 2017 and was fifth nationally in shutouts during her senior season. The goalkeeper set the school record at the University of Washington for career GAA (.98) and was the voted Most Valuable Player in 2017.