The Orlando Pride have announced the signing of goalkeeper Kaitlyn Savage. The signing comes quickly on the heels of yesterday's online report that the team was eyeing DiDi Haracic to defend Orlando's goal.
Savage, 25, was most recently with Adelaide United in Australia's W-League, where she made 12 starts this past season and earned 2015-2016 W-League Goalkeeper of the Year honors, becoming the first international player to do so in that league since 2009. Savage has also spent time with Glenfield Rovers FC in New Zealand and Pàr/KA FC in Iceland.
"I am delighted to have Kaitlyn joining us for the remainder of the season," said Pride Head Coach Tom Sermanni in a club press release. "We are fortunate to be able to bring in such an experienced and elite goalkeeper at this stage of the season. Her successful professional playing background in Iceland and Australia will be invaluable under our surest circumstances."
"I'm very excited to be joining the Orlando Pride," Savage said in the club release. "It is an honor for me to be a part of an incredible organization with such quality players and coaches, and I cannot wait to do all that I can to help the Club succeed."
Savage attended Florida International University, and has been playing in Australia since 2013. Savage has made 15 starts in goal during that time with Adelaide and Perth Glory. Savage, from Fox Island, WA, is an American citizen and will not take up an international roster spot.
The move comes as Pride keeper Ashlyn Harris gets set to report for Olympic duties with the U.S. team in Rio. The NWSL requires teams carry two goalkeepers when players are on international duty. Savage will compete with Megan Dorsey, who was signed in May as a third goalkeeper. But when Aubrey Bledsoe fractured her left fibula and the team announced she would miss the rest of the season, Dorsey was elevated to backup.
Savage earned First-team All-Sun Belt Conference honors as a junior at FIU in 2012, and won a career-high 13 matches while giving up a 0.89 goals against average. She had 21 shutouts in her collegiate career before heading to Australia to play professionally. She won Freshman of the year in the Sun Belt in 2009 where she had five shutouts.
Savage has a bit of an injury history, as she tore her ACL, lateral and medial meniscus and broke her femur in an injury when she was 16. She also redshirted in 2010 because she tore her ACL and meniscus again in a spring game during her freshman year. Apparently, she was also injured in 2013.
Check out some of her collegiate highlights here:
The Pride also announced that they've put Bledsoe on the season-ending disabled list. Bledsoe had previously tweeted that she didn't require surgery and that she could return by season's end but that tweet was taken down shortly afterwards.