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Cougs Morgan Weaver, Averie Collins selected in NWSL draft

Weaver, WSU’s all-time leading scorer, goes No. 2 overall.

NCAA Womens Soccer: Division I-College Cup-Washington State vs North Carolina John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

WSU’s all-time leading goal scorer Morgan Weaver was selected second overall, by the Portland Thorns, in the annual National Women’s Soccer League draft on Thursday.

Weaver’s teammate, Averie Collins, joined her in being drafted when the Washington (D.C.) Spirit selected the midfielder near the end of the second round with the 17th overall pick.

Weaver, who was thought of as a second round pick in most mock drafts, surprised almost everyone by going second overall. She is the highest draft pick for WSU in a professional sports league since Ryan Leaf went No. 2 overall in the NFL Draft in 1998, and she and Collins become the first NWSL draft picks for WSU since Nicole Setterlund in 2014.

Here are some more details, via WSU’s news release:

The second all-american in program history, Weaver finished her illustrious career at WSU as the program’s second leading scorer having netted 43 goals and tallying 98 points. She led the Cougars to their first College Cup in 2019 as a senior after posting a career-best 15 goals, the third most in single season history and the most for a Coug striker in the past 26 seasons. Scoring in bunches throughout her career, Weaver posted nine multi-goal games including tying the program record with four goals in just 45 minutes against Colorado on senior day. In addition to her play at WSU, Weaver has been a part of the U-23 USWNT system as well as most recently earning the program’s first invite to a senior national team training camp in December.

In just one year at WSU Collins left her mark on the Cougar program as her national championship experience played immediate dividends in the team’s historic postseason run. Collins, a 2017 champion at Stanford, moved to the midfield for the WSU and became the driving force in the center for the pitch. She finished her final collegiate season with second on the team in scoring with six goals, five assists, and 17 points. Coming up big when the lights were brightest, Collins scored the game-winner in overtime at Gonzaga, assisted on the overtime game-winner at No. 20 Cal and against No. 14 Memphis in the first round of the NCAA tournament, and scored the opener at #3 Virginia in round two. Collins’ father, Shane, was drafted in the second round of the 1992 NFL draft by the Washington Redskins.