Is the Women’s World Cup not giving you enough of your women’s soccer fix? Not very surprising, given that Northwestern women’s soccer is the true pinnacle of the sport, and it has been too long without it. However, wait no longer, because the ‘Cats’ season is just around the corner and Inside NU has you covered.
A deep bench will be critical if the Wildcats want to build upon their success from last season. As we continue our preseason coverage, we’ll highlight the potential substitutes for coach Michael Moynihan this season.
F Hayley Newman, Sophomore
Last season, Newman appeared in 12 games for a total of 123 minutes, mostly coming in to give star forwards Aurea del Carmen and Meg Boade valuable rest. Her best performance came against SIUE when she dished out an assist in her 36 minutes on the pitch. This year, Newman will likely continue to serve as a depth piece, and her role could seek to increase if she shows potential in the high wings to fill the gap left by Lily Gilbertson.
M Gabriella Grust, Junior
Grust has only played in two games in her Northwestern career, but she’s had the opportunity to learn from and train with some of the best midfielders in the Big Ten. That development could allow her to play a bigger role off the bench in 2023.
M Kelsey Kwon, Junior
Over her two years at Northwestern, Kwon has played in 12 games with her most notable performance being 19 minutes in the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16. As the team was dealing with a few different injuries, Kwon came in off the bench to try and keep the ‘Cats in the game. Northwestern ultimately fell 2-0, but gaining that postseason should prove invaluable for Kwon as she looks to expand her role this season.
D Ramira Ambrose, Sophomore
Ambrose did not make any appearances during her first year on the team, but she could see an increased role as a playmaker on the back line. In high school, Ambrose finished with the fifth most assists by a defender. She was also a member of the Minnesota All-State team and a state champion, so this experience could come in handy for the sophomore.
M Sydney Panek, Senior
Panek has only played in one game over three years at Northwestern, with her sole appearance coming against SIUE. Three years under Moynihan’s tutelage should have resonated though, and Panek will look to provide some veteran leadership if her number is called.
D Charis Toney, Sophomore
Toney did not see the field in her first season as a Wildcat, but she could prove a helpful addition to the Northwestern defense. The sophomore was the No. 15 defender in her high school class, and the teachings of new assistant coach Jennie Clark could help her become even more lockdown.
F Elyse DeSchryver, Senior
The fourth-year out of Michigan has not played since the 2021 season, but she’ll likely be a valuable depth piece up top. Over three years at Forest Hills Northern High School, DeSchryver scored 57 goals. This scoring ability could add to the already impressive numbers put up by Northwestern strikers.
M Alisha Ware, Sophomore
Like her teammate Newman, Ware appeared in 12 games during her first season in Evanston. The Brit featured in 169 minutes over the first 13 games of the 2022 season. Ware also boasts an impressive pedigree from back home across the pond. She played for England’s youth national team (U15-U19) while also being a member of Southhampton’s first team. This experience can make Ware a force to be reckoned with in her sophomore season.