Ertz named U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year

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Ron Chenoy
The 25-year-old edged Megan Rapinoe for the honor after enjoying a successful move from center back to defensive midfield

Julie Ertz has been named U.S. Soccer's Female Player of the Year, the federation announced on Wednesday.

The 25-year-old earned the honor after making a successful transition from center back to defensive midfield, scoring six goals as the U.S. finished the year with a 7-0-1 run. On the club level, Ertz notched four goals and three assists in 22 NWSL matches for the Chicago Red Stars.

Ertz finished with 51.6 per cent of the vote from national team coaches and players, club coaches, administrators, media, and former players. Megan Rapinoe was second in the voting, with Alex Morgan, Lindsey Horan and Samantha Mewis also finalists for the award.

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"I want to give a big thanks to everyone who voted," Ertz said in a news release. "This was a really unique year for me with a lot of different challenges, but it means so much to have the support of my husband, my family, my coaches and my teammates.

"I'm honored and thankful from the bottom of my heart and I'm really looking forward to next year and as we have some big goals to accomplish."

U.S. youth international Sophia Smith, a 17-year-old who plays for youth club Real Colorado, claimed the Young Female Player of the Year award with 48.5 percent of the vote, beating out Stanford's Tierna Davidson.

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