PHILADELPHIA (Jan. 12, 2023) – The North Carolina Courage have selected four players in the 2023 NWSL Draft, presented by Ally, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center Thursday night. The Courage made all four selections in the first round, taking forward Olivia Wingate out of Notre Dame sixth overall, Sydney Collins from California eighth, Clara Robbins of Florida State ninth and Haley Hopkins out of Virginia with the eleventh pick. The four first round picks tied for the most by one club in NWSL Draft history.
ROUND ONE, SIXTH OVERALL: OLIVIA WINGATE (Forward, Notre Dame)
Wingate (Wilmington, Massachusetts) is a five-year member of the Notre Dame women’ soccer team, appearing in 95 games and making 74 starts. She scored 26 goals, erupting for 14 in her final season with the Fighting Irish, and dished 11 assists for her career, totaling 63 points.
She earned third team All-ACC and All-Region in 2021 before her breakout 2022 season that earned first team All-ACC and United Soccer Coaches third team All-America status. She has U.S. Women’s National Team youth experience with both the U-16 and U-18 squads.
ROUND ONE, EIGHTH OVERALL: SYDNEY COLLINS (Defensive Midfielder, California)
Collins (Beaverton, Oregon) was a three-time captain for the Cal Bears. She appeared in 85 games and made 84 starts over her five-year career. She earned third team All-Pac 12 as a senior in 2021 then earned both conference and regional accolades in her final season, leading Cal in minutes played. The Courage acquired the eighth overall pick on draft night in a trade that sent forward Diana Ordóñez to the Houston Dash.
ROUND ONE, NINTH OVERALL: CLARA ROBBINS (Midfielder, Florida State)
Robbins (Stafford, Virginia) finishes her career as the all-time leader in games played in Florida State history with 110 and ranks 19th all-time in program history in scoring. She was the ACC Tournament MVP in 2021 as she helped the Seminoles to a National Championship. A versatile player that can contribute on all three lines, Robbins was second team All-ACC and All-Region in her final collegiate season. Overall, she’s a three-time All-ACC performer, two-time ACC Tournament MVP and won two national championships.
ROUND ONE, ELEVENTH OVERALL: HALEY HOPKINS (Forward, Virginia)
After a decorated three-year career at Vanderbilt that featured a pair of All-American seasons, Hopkins (Newport Beach, California) finished her career with two All-ACC seasons and United Soccer Coaches second team All-Region honors in 2022, her fourth-career selection. She led the Cavaliers in goals with 14 in 2022 while her five assists tied for second on the team. Her shining moment came in the NCAA Tournament quarterfinal when her equalizer forced overtime against eventual national champion UCLA.
Overall, Hopkins appeared in 104 collegiate games and made 100 starts, scoring 56 goals and adding 26 assists. She netted 21 game-winners and was 5-6 from the penalty spot, including a 3-for-4 mark in her final season at Virginia. Her father, David, played baseball at Virginia and later spent time in the Texas Rangers organization.