KANSAS CITY, Mo. – UMKC saw four women's soccer players from their 2018 WAC regular season championship squad earn All-Region recognition by the United Soccer Coaches on Tuesday. The honors mark the first time in program history that multiple players have received the award in a single season.
The group of standout players include a pair of seniors who recently wrapped up terrific careers – Reighan Childers (Grain Valley, Mo.) and Lexie Howard (Kearney, Mo.) – along with junior Abby Small (Kansas City, Mo.) and freshman Rylan Childers (Grain Valley, Mo.).
“It is truly a special honor to have four players named to All-Region teams, particularly given the number of really talented players on the lengthy list of elite programs within the region,” commented reigning WAC Coach of the Year Chris Cissell. “Each of these individuals, along with all of the players who made contributions throughout the year, played a huge role in the high-level of success we were able to achieve this season.”
Headlining the list, Re. Childers became the first player in nine years of UMKC women’s soccer history to be named as First Team All-Region. The honor comes on the heels of a phenomenal senior campaign in which she tallied six goals and seven assists, leading to a 2018 Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Offensive Player of the Year award. Her recognition as one of the premiere players in the highly accomplished Pacific region, which includes dominant programs Stanford, USC and UCLA, is another milestone in Childers’ career that ended as the program’s career assist leader (22). Childers also ranks among the top-five in program history in goals (22) and points (66).
Howard and Ry. Childers’ inclusion on the Second Team All-Region also marked the first time in program history for a UMKC player to receive such lofty recognition. Howard’s 2018 season saw the senior forward strike for 10 goals and 10 assists apiece in earning First Team All-WAC honors. Her masterful four-year career at UMKC finished Howard sitting atop the program leaders in career points (96) and career goals (38).
The Second Team All-Region award for Ry. Childers is made more impressive by receiving the honor as a true freshman. In her first season on campus, Childers made a name for herself in a big way in scoring a team-best tying 11 goals to pair with a conference-best 14 assists. Her remarkable offensive ability was recognized with a First Team All-WAC and WAC Freshman of the Year award, the beginning of what could be a spectacular career.
Small marked the fifth player in program history selected to the Third Team All-Region but is the first UMKC defender to receive the honor. Earning her second-consecutive WAC Defensive Player of the Year award following the 2018 season, the junior defender served as a centerpiece of a UMKC back line that was among the best in the conference. Small played an integral role in the Roos opening WAC play with seven shutouts and allowing a league-low three goals in conference play on the year. Small also chipped in on the offensive end, recording a pair of goals and an assist on the season.
“I am beyond proud of the hard work that our players put in on a consistent basis and it is very rewarding to see those efforts pay off,” noted Cissell. “As is the always the case with individual awards such as these, they are only made possible by having a great team full of tremendous teammates. Every single player on our team has a hand in this recognition and this is a special moment for our program.”
– UMKC –