RICHMOND, VA (April 24, 2020) – The Elite Clubs National League Girls is excited to announce the addition of NWSL Louisville Academy for the 2020-21 season. This addition reinforces the ECNL mission to Raise the Game by supporting the development of the nation’s exceptional youth players.

“We are excited to welcome NWSL Louisville Academy, and to offer the ECNL Girls platform to players in Kentucky for the first time,” said ECNL Girls Commissioner Jen Winnagle. “They will be a great addition to the Ohio Valley Conference, and we look forward to working with their leadership to support both the youth and professional game in Louisville.”

NWSL Louisville Academy was founded in March 2020 and will begin competition this fall. As part of the Louisville City Youth Academy, the girls’ academy aligned with Louisville’s NWSL franchise, which will begin play in 2021, and the boys’ academy is aligned with Louisville City FC, the city’s USL Championship men’s club.

“The ECNL is the top level of girls’ youth soccer in our country,” Louisville City Youth Academy Director Mario Sanchez said. “The ECNL platform allows all of the girls to compete on a national level and be seen by U.S. Soccer National team scouts and college coaches from across the country.  The ECNL allows girls to pursue all of their dreams, whether that is the pursuit of a college soccer scholarship or an opportunity to play for the U.S. National teams. I am extremely proud of our Girls Academy Director Tim Nowak and his dedication for girls’ youth soccer.  Tim has been a great leader and advocate for girls’ soccer in Louisville throughout the years.”

Nearly 90% of ECNL Girls alumni move on to play in college, overwhelmingly dominating the 2019 individual conference honors in the “Power 5” conferences.  In total, over 1,100 ECNL Alums played this year in these five conferences, accounting for more than 62% of all rostered players in the Power 5. 

Additional information on participating member clubs for the 2020-21 Season will be released in the coming weeks.


About Elite Clubs National League Girls: The Elite Clubs National League Girls (ECNL Girls) was founded in 2009 to enhance the developmental experience of female youth soccer players in the United States through: (i) improving the competitive environment through creation of a true national competitive league; (ii) improving the process for identifying elite female soccer players through a systematic scouting and identification program based on national competitions; and (iii) improving the daily training environment at top female youth soccer clubs through developing best practices and training and organizational guidelines for its member clubs. The ECNL Girls is sanctioned by US Club Soccer and is sponsored by Nike Soccer.


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Media Contact:

Mary Conway