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Amanda West, Landy Mertz Become First NWSL Draft Selections in Pitt Women’s Soccer Program History

Photo courtesy Matt Hawley / Pitt Athletics

For the first time in program history, the Pitt women’s soccer team had players’ selected in the National Women’s Soccer League.

Fifth year forward Amanda West was taken with the 36th overall pick, by the Houston Dash while forward Landy Mertz was selected in the fourth round at the 52nd overall pick by the North Carolina Courage.

The history maker, West completed her collegiate career ranked No. 2 in the nation for total goals (50), holding the Pitt program record, No. 3 in the nation for 30 goals and 20 assists (127) and points per game (1.72), and No. 4 in the nation for total points (127) and goals per game (0.68).

The Burlington, Ontario, Canada native started in 21 matches out of a record 24 played for the Panthers this season, totaling 1718 minutes. The fifth year posted 11 goals this season while posting 89 shots with 47 on target and posted two game winning goals for the Panthers this season. West’s efforts in the historic game against North Carolina secured the spot in the semifinals in the ACC Championships for the Panthers. She capped her collegiate career with a list of accolades this season including United Soccer Coaches Scholar All-America honors, United Soccer Coaches All-Atlantic Region Second Team and All-ACC second team.

Mertz capped her collegiate career ranked in the top-10 in the nation for assists per game (0.58) and total assists in a season (14). The Pittsburgh, PA native (Upper St. Clair) leaves Pitt with her name in the record book for most assists in a single season.

Mertz mad a start in 23 out of a record-breaking 24 games played in the 2023 season, totaling 1907 minutes. She secured four goals and 14 assists on the season, posting a total of 58 shots with 33 on target. The fifth year secured three assists and a goal in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament against Ohio State to help the Panthers propel past the Buckeyes and into the Second Round. Mertz found herself ranked at No. 47 after an impressive 2023 season on the Top Drawer Soccer Top-100 Post-Season list. This honor was added next to a number of accolades from the record-breaking season including United Soccer Coaches All-Atlantic Region Third Team honors, and All-ACC Third Team honors. 

With West and Mertz’s efforts in the 2023 season, Pitt set program records for most wins overall (17), ACC wins (6), home wins (9), points (194), goals (64) and assists (66). The Panthers posted fived top 25 wins including defeating three teams in the top ten. Pitt also advanced to the ACC Championship Semifinal and NCAA Elite Eight fields for the first time in program history.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Glory on the Grass

Riverhounds MF Kenardo Forbes

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