ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA — Pacific Northwest soccer player Mariah Lee who graced the USL W League pitch in Olympia, WA with Oly Town FC in 2023 has signed with professional Australian club Adelaide United for the upcoming 2023-24 Liberty A-League season. The news comes after a successful year for the decorated forward in the USL W as Oly Town won the Northwest Division title with an undefeated regular season record and #1 seed into the USL national playoff.
Mariah Lee scored 7 goals and tallied 4 assists in her single USL W League season with Oly Town and captained the squad in every match she played in.
Q&A with Mariah Lee
Mariah Lee chatted with Oly Town to discuss her pro signing and journey from kid in the PNW to pro soccer player in Australia in 2023.
Q – How did the opportunity come about to sign a pro contract with Adelaide United?
Well, my friend who also signed with Adelaide, Jenna (Holtz), it’s funny because when Chris asked me to play for Oly Town I told him to reach out to Jenna as well — she’s from Tacoma and we played together at WPFC. Anyway, she was in contact with AUFC and they said they were looking for a forward, so she told me to send my profile. That was coming off of my season with Oly Town so I had a lot of fresh highlights which added to my catalogue, so it was pretty much a done deal after that.
Q – What are you most looking forward to playing in Australia?
Right now is a really exciting time for women’s football in Australia coming off of the World Cup. Clubs have recorded historic attendance and investment and membership numbers for their women’s side, including United, so I’m just super excited to be playing and engaging with fans in a country with so much momentum surrounding the women’s game.
Q – Sounds like your friend Jenna will be with you, what is your history playing together and knowing each other?
My friend Jenna and I played together at WPFC and then against each other in college. I was at Stanford and she was at Santa Clara so we’d play them multiple times a year. It’s actually funny because my junior year I red-shirt because I had an injury and she scored the game-winner against us in the NCAA Sweet 16 knocking us out. But I’m really looking forward to playing with her because we had a lot of goal/assist combinations together growing up.
Q – Is your family going to be able to make some games in Australia?
Yeah, my mom is already looking at flights. They’re all trying to make it out for a game or two!
Q – What was your experience like playing in the USL W League in 2023?
The USL W was great because I hadn’t played in an actual game since the previous October (I had only been in training games with OL Reign), so it was nice to get back playing, get back into stride of scoring goals. I think a big part of United’s willingness to sign me so quickly was that I was coming off a big season with Oly Town, so there was no question of “Does she still got it?”
Q – Would you recommend others play in the USL W League and Oly Town?
Definitely! There are so many positives that come of it. On-field, obviously, playing, staying fit, staying sharp. For me, my family and friends could come see me play. They hadn’t seen me live in a long time because I’d been overseas. Then off the field, the friendships, the memories, the traveling. Just connecting with girls from different parts of the country, it’s really special.
Q – What are some memorable moments of playing in Olympia and Oly Town in the USL W?
I don’t know if I have just one. But the hat-trick I scored in my Oly Town debut (4-0 win in Eugene, OR) and my birthday goal in front of my family and friends probably take the cake.
Photo Gallery: Mariah Lee Hat Trick against Lane United in Eugene, OR
Q – How can Oly Town and your PNW fans watch your games in Australia?
All of our games are streamed on Youtube through KEEPUP football, so you all can tune in and watch. The times might be a little crazy but they’ll be there starting with our season-opener next week.
Mariah Lee was a 2023 all conference pick for the USL W League as well as a USL W all-national team selection.
Helpful links to follow Mariah Lee’s Soccer Journey:
Adelaide United Website click here
Mariah Lee Instagram click here
USL W League click here
Oly Town returns to the USL W League in 2024 as reigning champs of the Northwest. To learn more about Oly Town visit olytownfc.com.
Email email@example.com for information on recruitment and the 2024 season.
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