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Fletcher Brings An Experienced Winner To Team

June 11, 2010 - Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) - Sky Blue FC News Release

Sky Blue FC of Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) officially announced today that the team has come to terms with defender/midfielder Kendall Fletcher. The North Carolina native, who began the WPS season with Saint Louis Athletica, brings to Sky Blue FC a versatile playmaker who also boasts a resume with multiple championships on different levels.

"I have followed Kendall's career since her days as a top college player, and I am thrilled to have her," Sky Blue FC head coach Pauliina Miettinen said of Fletcher. "She brings tremendous defensive skills, versatility and what's more, a huge heart. It is a homecoming for her in New Jersey, and I know she will fit right in with our playing philosophy."

Fletcher was a second round selection of the Los Angeles Sol in the 2009 WPS General Draft, appearing in one match before making the move to Saint Louis. She then played in 16 games for Athletica, including 15 consecutive starts, and her three assists were the second highest mark on the team. At the conclusion of the 2009 WPS season, Fletcher went on loan to the Central Coast Mariners of the Australian W-League, posting four goals in 10 matches.

"I feel like we hit the jackpot with Kendall Fletcher," Sky Blue FC General Manager Gerry Marrone stated. "She is one of the most talented and hardest working players in the league. What's more, her reputation as a leader, in addition to her experience on both the national and international level, will be a tremendous asset to Sky Blue FC."

Fletcher put together an impressive collegiate career at the University of North Carolina (UNC) from 2002 to 2005, including her being part of an NCAA Championship in 2003. In her four years with the Tar Heels, she registered 13 goals and 17 assists in 92 appearances while the team posted a cumulative 91-4-7 mark during her stay. As a senior in 2005, she played in all 25 games for the Tar Heels, tallying five goals and four assists for a team that recorded a 23-1-1 record and advanced to the NCAA Tournament Quarterfinals. While playing at UNC, she also played at least one season with Sky Blue FC's Yael Averbuch, Jenni Branam, Heather O'Reilly and Kacey White.

"Kendall is an excellent header, tenacious in the tackle and very smart tactically," said UNC head coach Anson Dorrance, who is an avid supporter of WPS. "She's just a fighter. She will lend Sky Blue FC leadership and competitive fire."

Before WPS was founded, Fletcher had a very successful career in the USL W-League, first breaking into the league in 2004 with the Carolina Dynamo. During that season, she earned a spot on the W-League All-Conference Team after posting four goals and three assists in 11 games. She then played for the New Jersey Wildcats from 2005-2006, helping the team to the 2005 W-League Championship and an overall two-year record of 30-2-0. During her time with the Wildcats, Fletcher played alongside O'Reilly and Sky Blue FC midfielder Carli Lloyd.

Fletcher then finished up her W-League career with another championship season in 2008 when she and the Pali Blues Soccer Club rolled to a perfect 14-0-0 record and league title. Fletcher served as the anchor of the Blues defense that year, and the team never trailed in a single contest until a short period of the league championship game. For her efforts, she was once again named to the All-League Team. Also on the Pali roster that season were Sky Blue FC's Karen Bardsley and India Trotter.

In 2002, Fletcher helped bring home the FIFA U-19 World Youth Championship when she was playing for the U.S. U-19 National Team. She was also a key player for the U.S. U-21 National Team which won the 2005 Nordic Cup, serving as team captain of the side when it finished as runners-up in the 2006 Nordic Cup. Fletcher has also capped twice with the full U.S. Women's National Team.

The next game action for Sky Blue FC comes on Sunday when the team travels to New England for a road pairing with the Boston Breakers. The team will return to New Jersey on Saturday, June 19th, to host Philadelphia, and tickets for that game are available now by calling 1-888-SBFC-TIX.

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