On Friday, NJ/NY Gotham FC and the rest of the NWSL participated in the 2024 NWSL Draft. Unlike the MLS SuperDraft, the women's league utilizes the draft more to find starters and stars. The Bats know well enough how one can strike gold, for they drafted Rookie of the Year Jenna Nighswonger last year in the first round.
This year, Gotham FC went into the draft with only one pick. The club knew they had to pick someone valuable who can contribute in some way. However, with their recent signings of USWNT stars, they could breathe easy knowing their pick could take their time to grow and develop.
Gotham FC selected Maycee Bell
So, with the last pick of the first round, Gotham FC selected Maycee Bell from the University of North Carolina. The defender was a RedShirt Senior this past season after suffering a season-ending ACL injury in 2022. She was on the MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List, indicating she was one of the more talented center-backs in college soccer.
Nonetheless, she had a solid season during her final year. Bell scored in the last game of the year when UNC lost in the NCAA Soccer tournament quarterfinals. Also, she was part of a defense that limited teams to 7.4 shots per game.
Meanwhile, Gotham needed another center-back. The club was smart to draft someone like Bell, who probably is still finding her form after her injury. Likely, she will act as a depth piece and see some minutes during the upcoming campaign. The potential is there though, and that is exciting.
With another draft over for NJ/NY Gotham FC, the club can officially focus on finding their last few signings before the preseason. So far, they are a competitive team. The 2024 season is bound to be an exciting one.