METUCHEN, NJ - A new batch of five United Women’s Soccer alumnae find themselves crossing the pond to continue their careers in professional soccer, including two first-timers.
Kelly O’Brien (Lancaster Inferno) inked her second professional contract, signing with the Albanian-side Vllaznia. O’Brien just returned from a stint in Hungary with DVTK. The Lafayette College grad spent four seasons with the Inferno, racking up back-to-back UWS East Conference Defensive Player of the Year awards in 2018 and 2019. The backstop put in a spectacular performance for Lancaster in 2019, allowing only seven goals in nine matches (five shutouts) during the regular season.
Macy Miller (Indiana Union) inked her first pro deal with Sunnanå SK in Skellefteå, Sweden. Sunnanå plays in the Swedish Women’s Football Division 1, which is the third tier of women’s soccer in Sweden. Miller helped lead Indiana to a Midwest Conference Championship and a spot in the UWS National semifinals in 2019. The Carmel, Indiana native had recently started all 19 games for Butler University, scoring five goals and adding five assists in her senior campaign.
Hayley Nolan (Connecticut Fusion) is also skipping across the pond to play professionally, signing with London City Lionesses in the FA Championship. Nolan will be close to her native Ireland, where she initially spent time with Peamount United in the Women’s National League. The Kildare-born midfielder has 25 caps for the Irish U17 and U19 Women’s National Teams, and added a call-up to the senior team recently for the Women’s EURO 2022 Qualifier. She also dominated the college-ranks, earning America East All-Conference honors all four seasons at Hartford. During the last two summers, Nolan shone brightly for the JP Dellacamera managed squad in Connecticut, helping the Fusion to two second-place finishes in the East Conference.
Julia Weithofer (New England Mutiny) is returning back to Lazio after a previous stint with the squad in 2018. The midfielder originally got her start with Roma Calcio Femminile, before moving to Lazio, then to Durham Women FC in England, and now back to Italy. And in-between all of those stints overseas? She and Orlando City Pride’s newest signing and reigning UWS Player of the Year, Kate Howarth, helped push the Mutiny to new heights during their 2019 UWS East Conference Regular Season crown, culminating their fifth year as teammates.
Michaela Abam (Colorado Pride) recently re-upped with Real Betis Fem, where she’s scored three goals in 15 appearances. She’ll rejoin former UWS Player Emily Dolan (Lancaster Inferno) on the Spanish squad. The former No. 4 pick in the NWSL Draft by Sky Blue FC also has seen time in France, netting a lone goal in ten appearances with Paris FC. Abam has two caps for the Cameroonian Women’s National Team, and was named to the World Cup roster last year.