WWC 2013: U.S. Women's National Team

Photo Source: InternationalBowl.com
Women's World Championship in Tackle Football is approaching! As TDEU is the Official Media Partner of the WWC, we'll do a series of articles before the kickoff and reports directly from the field. More about WWC - click HERE.

The U.S. Women's National Team won the gold medal back in 2010 at the inaugural IFAF Women's World Championship tournament. They defeated Canada in Stockholm, Sweden, with a score 66-0. This year’s U.S. team returns 14 women from the 2010 squad and enters undefeated in international competition.

More than 175 women from across the United States tried out for the 2013 U.S. Women’s National Team during a three-day camp in January in Austin, Texas. The 45-player Team USA roster and coaching staff will hold a training camp in Chicago, Illinois, in June prior to departing for Finland.

Coaching Staff
Team USA will be led by head coach John Konecki of Schererville, Indiana. Konecki also was head coach of the U.S. Women’s National Team that won the 2010 gold medal in Stockholm, Sweden. Konecki has led the Chicago Force of the Women’s Football Alliance to a 34-7 (.829) record in four years, including two straight undefeated regular seasons and a runner-up finish in 2012. Other coaches include Adam Lewandowski (defensive coordinator), John Shockley (defensive line), Mark McLaughlin (special teams, defensive backs) and Julie Shockley (running backs, wide receivers).

“There is no higher honor than representing your country in international competition,” U.S. head coach John Konecki said. “Additionally, I am fully committed to advancing women’s tackle football, and competing on a world stage allows for women to continue on with the mission of being ambassadors for the sport.”

The Team
Photo Source: InternationalBowl.com
Team USA has 14 returning players from the 2010 gold medal team – quarterbacks Sami Grisafe and Karen Mulligan; running back Mia Brickhouse; wide receiver Adrienne Smith; offensive linemen Jamie Menzyk and Dawn Pederson; defensive backs Alberta Fitcheard-Brydson and Sharon Vasquez; linebackers Leah Hinkle and Jen Welter; and defensive linemen Kimberly Marks, Danielle Golay, Knengi Martin and Donna Wilkinson

“I believe there is no bigger honor than representing the United States, and there is no bigger game in the USA than football. As a 5-foot-3 female, I could not have dreamed big enough to dream that I would be a linebacker for Team USA in both 2010 and 2013. I hope to show everyone: You don't have to be big to play big.” Jen Welter, Vero Beach, Florida

WWC 2013
Team USA expects to defend its gold medal from 2010 by bringing home another championship in 2013. Team USA also hopes that the excitement and media coverage surrounding the 2013 Women’s World Championships will help continue to grow the sport of women’s tackle football worldwide.