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Trio From Big 12 Selected in NWSL Drafts
January 18, 2013
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Renae Cuellar (Oklahoma), Adrianna Franch (Oklahoma State) and Whitney Berry (Kansas) will be playing in the new National Women's Soccer League. Cuellar, a member of the Mexican Women's National Team, was one of 55 U.S., Canadian and Mexican National Team players allocated to the NWSL's eight clubs last Friday. Franch and Berry were both selected in today's NWSL College Draft at the Indanapolis Convention Center.

Cuellar who made OU soccer history by being named the 2012 Big 12 Conference Offensive Player of the Year, has been allocated to FC Kansas City. She became the first member of the Oklahoma program to earn a spot on the NSCAA All-Central Region First Team in her lone season with the Sooners after transferring from the University of Arizona. Cuellar also earned spots on the All-Big 12 First Team and Big 12 All-Newcomer Team for her efforts in 2012. The La Puente, Calif., native led the Sooners with 26 points from a team-high 12 goals, which ranks as the third-most in a single season in Oklahoma history. Her 13 points from six goals in eight Big 12 regular season matches paced the conference.

Franch was selected by the Western New York Flash with the sixth overall pick in the NWSL College Draft. She becomes the highest-ever Cowgirl draft pick in women's professional soccer. A three-time All-American at OSU, Franch capped her record-setting career this fall, starting all 20 games for the Cowgirls and recording six shutouts, 79 saves and a 1.07 goals against average. She was named to the All-Big 12 First Team for the fourth time, becoming only the seventh player in Big 12 Conference history to achieve that distinction.
One of the most decorated players in Big 12 and OSU soccer history, Franch owns the OSU career record for shutouts with 38 and led the Big 12 in that category in three of her four seasons. She finished her career with 325 saves to rank second on OSU's all-time list. Franch's 38 shutouts rank sixth all time in NCAA history, and her 8,064:02 minutes in goal rank ninth on the NCAA list.

Berry will join Cuellar on the FC Kansas City squad after being selected with the third pick in the third round of the NWSL College Draft, the 19th overall pick. A four-year starter for the Jayhawks, Berry had an outstanding senior campaign in which she led the team with seven assists and chipped in six goals. Her seven helpers were the second-most in the Big 12 on the year. The Wichita, Kan., native ended her career as KU's career-leader in assists (32), No. 2 in career points (78) and tied for third-most all-time with her 23 goals. She was a two-time National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-Central Region selection in her Jayhawk career, including a first team honoree this year. The senior was also named an All-Big 12 First Team selection this past year and was honored on the Academic All-Big 12 team in 2011.

The league, which is administered by U.S. Soccer, will begin in the spring of 2013.

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