A handful or so of Alaska women, all from the Anchorage area, hit the big-time this week when the NCAA Division I Women's Soccer Championship kicks off at campus sites across the nation.
Among the 64 teams that qualified, we perused rosters and found several local women.
No. 22-ranked Southern California (12-5-3), which opens against Illinois, includes junior Carly Butcher of Anchorage, who has played in all 20 matches this season and contributed one goal and one assist. In her career, she has bagged seven goals and seven assists for 21 points (a goal is worth two points on an individual's point total). She's tied for third on her team with 14 shots on goal.
At Wisconsin, the Badgers include sophomore twin sisters Alev and Derya Kelter of Eagle River. Alev has produced three goals and two assists for eight points in 18 games. she's tied for second on the club in goals and third in points, and has launched a team-high 20 shots on goal. Derya has played in 14 games. The Badgers (10-4-4) play Milwaukee in the first round.
Also in the field is San Diego (11-7-2), which includes junior forward Maggie McGuire. She's played in 13 matches this season and furnished one assist. The Toreros play Wake Forest in the first round.
Long Beach State (14-5-2) includes sophomore forward Whitney Velez, who has played in two games. Long Beach plays Santa Clara.
Sacramento State (9-9-1), which plays Stanford, has a junior in Krystal Moreno, whose hometown is listed as Anchorage. She graduated from a California high school, according to her school's website.