UNCW goal keeper Sydney Schneider selected 29th overall in NWSL draft

WILMINGTON, NC (UNCW Sports)– Sydney Schneider‘s career at UNCW has included major milestones and historic moments. She added yet another one late Wednesday night – becoming the first player in program history to be selected in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) Draft.

Schneider collected the latest accolade after being picked with the No. 29 overall selection by the Washington Spirit in the league’s annual event, which was held virtually.

The inaugural winner of the Colonial Athletic Association Goalkeeper of the Year award in 2019, Schneider earned First-Team All-CAA and NCCSIA All-State distinction as a junior after posting a 1.06 goals against average while stopping 73.5 percent of the shots she faced.

The Dayton, N.J., product received CAA Defensive Player of the Week honors on Oct. 14, 2019, when she led UNCW to a pair of shutout victories over William & Mary and Drexel. In addition, she registered a season-high seven saves against Middle Tennessee on Sept. 13.

The CAA Goalkeeper of the Year award capped a very busy 2019 season for Schneider, who also started in goal for Jamaica in the FIFA Women’s World Cup. She made four saves in two matches during the group stage, including a three-save performance against Brazil.

“I feel like you dream of this as a child like yes playing in a World Cup, but also being drafted and playing professionally,” Schneider says. “I feel like usually that’s the first dream before the World Cup, I guess I went a little out of order. I mean it’s amazing it’s definitely up there on one of the most amazing things in my life.”

As a sophomore in 2018, Schneider split time between the Seahawks and the Jamaican National Team. She appeared in eight games with UNCW and made 18 saves while allowing nine goals. Meanwhile, Schneider led Jamaica to a third-place effort at the CONCACAF Women’s Championship, securing the nation’s first-ever berth in the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

In 2017, Schneider became the second goalkeeper in UNCW women’s soccer history to play every second in a season as she authored a 1.13 goals against average, ranking fourth in the CAA. She tallied 53 saves in 19 contests and earned four shutouts. She racked up a career-high eight saves in a 1-0 victory over Charleston on Oct. 19, 2017, and notched back-to-back clean sheets against Dayton and UMBC.

Schneider ranks fifth at UNCW with a 1.20 career goals against average, while her 18 career victories are good for fourth on the all-time list. In addition, Schneider’s nine career shutouts are tied for sixth overall.

“I could not be happier for Sydney,” UNCW Coach Chris Neal said. “She is so deserving of this chance. She is a great example that dreams can be realized in a UNCW Seahawk jersey. I speak for our entire team when I say we are elated and so excited to see what the future holds for her.”

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