W-League News Release
Thursday, December 19, 2013
TAMPA, Fla. – The W-League is pleased to announce the addition of the Gulf Coast Texans, beginning with the 2014 season. The Texans will also add W-20 and Super-20 League teams in 2014.
“We are extremely excited to welcome such a first-class organization to the W-League,” said W-League Senior Director Amanda Duffy. “The Gulf Coast Texans have proven to be a highly competitive team on the field, and we look forward to helping them build their brand off the field as one of the top women’s teams in North America.”
Based in Pensacola, Florida, the Texans were the 2012 WPSL national champions and are operated by Gulf Coast Texans Soccer Club, a respected elite youth club that has sent many players into the NCAA ranks. Affiliated with the Dallas Texans Soccer Club, the Gulf Coast Texans serve as home to more than 1,000 competitive and recreational players.
Club Director of Coaching David Kemp will serve as the W-League head coach, assisted by Austin King and Jason Providence, while Dan Baccarini serves as general manager. Kemp joined the club in 2004 after previously serving as DOC of Mililani Soccer Club in Hawaii, and has helped the Texans more than double in size. More than 130 of his players have moved on to play college soccer during the past nine years.
"We couldn't be more excited about joining such a professional organization,” Kemp said. “Being part of the W-League will give us the resources to grow off the field and will provide the highest level of competition available to us on the field.
“This is massive for the community and the surrounding area, being able to field a team in the top league below the major league for women - NWSL - and bring the highest level of play possible to Pensacola.”
The Texans will join the W-League’s Southeastern Conference, which includes the 2011 W-League champion Atlanta Silverbacks. Featuring current, former international and professional stars, the W-League also provides elite amateurs the opportunity to compete while maintaining their eligibility as college student-athletes. A total of 11 players in the recent NCAA Women’s Championship Game had W-League experience.
All three teams will play their home games at Ashton Brosnaham Stadium, site of many major events including Gulf South Conference Championships and NCAA Division II National Championships.
"The W-20 and S-20 programs will provide our program and community the link for college preparation during the summer and will also provide our elite youth players another fantastic opportunity for development," Kemp said.
As the premier U-20 adult-amateur men’s and women’s leagues in North America, W-20 and the Super-20 League provide the necessary platform for top 17- to 20-year-olds in the United States and Canada to compete at an elite level, while also serving as a reserve system for professional and senior adult-amateur teams.