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Tillett plays for Chattanooga in WPSL

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ELUDE: Hannah Tillett eludes a defender during a Chattanooga Lady Red Wolves game this summer.
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CELEBRATION: Tillett (center) celebrates a goal with her Chattanooga teammates.

by Eric Andrews - eandrews@h-ponline.com

Huntington native and 2018 Huntington North graduate Hannah Tillett has spent her summer competing in the Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL) playing for the Chattanooga Lady Red Wolves in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

According to the WPSL’s website, the league aims to provide the highest level of developmental opportunities for amateur players throughout the country. The WPSL, which is in its 22nd season, now features more than 100 teams and is the largest women’s soccer league in the world. Teams’ rosters consist of collegiate, post-collegiate, international and standout prep athletes. The United States Adult Soccer Association, an affiliate of the United States Soccer Federation, sanctions the league.

“The WPSL and Chattanooga Lady Red Wolves was a great experience that went above all expectations for me this summer,” Tillett said. “Alongside the benefit of getting to train almost daily and playing meaningful games at a high level, was the fun of getting to know girls and families from the area and make some friends that I will keep throughout the year.”

Tillett’s Lady Red Wolves piled up an 8–1–1 regular season record en route to claiming the Southeast Conference’s regular season championship.

In Tillett’s nine games played, she totaled three goals and one assist, with her best statistical game coming on May 17 against Peachtree City MOBA, a 5–2 win for Chattanooga in which Tillett posted a goal and an assist. Tillett’s three goals tied for second on the Lady Red Wolves, while her seven total points placed third on the squad.

Tillett has appreciated the competition the WPSL provides and believes her experience playing in the league has helped her develop her game.

“I have been impressed with the level of play in the WPSL and the number of women that take it seriously,” Tillett said. “I think that I hit it off with my teammates so well because they all were committed, competitive and truly wanted to be there, even getting together to train outside of our designated team training. Without the WPSL providing competition over the summer in between my seasons at Middle Tennessee State University, I would not be in game shape coming into preseason. Playing with new girls, a new coaching staff, and a new environment expanded my comfort zone.”

The Huntington native noted the regular season conference title as her main season highlight on the field, but also expressed being able to teach soccer to local children with special needs was another top memory of the summer. Tillett added the support the city of Chattanooga has shown for the team has also helped the team feel at home and play their best.

Tillett and the top-seeded Lady Red Wolves faced off with fourth-seeded Peachtree City MOBA in the Southeast Conference tournament on Friday, but results were not available as of The Herald-Press’s deadline. The winner of Friday’s game moves on to face the winner of Friday’s other Southeast Conference semifinal between Nashville and Memphis.