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WRITTEN BY: Jeremy Sampson
PUBLISHED ON: October 19, 2017

Lansing United has created a women’s team that will begin play in the amateur United Women’s Soccer (UWS) league beginning in May of 2018.

Lansing United joins three other Michigan teams in the Midwest Conference of the UWS, including the defending national champion Grand Rapids Football Club, the Detroit Sun and the Michigan Legends.  The Lansing United women’s team will mirror the men’s team in rostering college players who will be looking to continue their development in the summer months.

“We are thrilled to be the newest member of the UWS,” Lansing United President/CEO Jeremy Sampson said. “Forming a women’s team has been a goal since we started the men’s team in 2014. There are so many quality women’s players from the mid-Michigan area and we are excited to provide them with an opportunity to develop in the summer.”

The United Women’s Soccer (UWS) was formed late in 2015 under the belief that there was a gap in the development of the female soccer player between the collegiate game and the professional and international game.  The UWS is a dedicated Tier 2 league that fills that gap with a summer competitive season that will help the collegiate player evolve and enhance their game for fall competition while giving the post-collegiate player a chance to further develop for the professional and international ranks.

“We are excited to welcome Lansing United to UWS. The organization has a proven record of accomplishment in operating a team at this level. Lansing United has demonstrated an ability to meet our league standards both on and off the field with its very successful men’s program,” UWS League Director Joe Ferrara said. “The passion to the women’s game that Jeremy Sampson has shown is exactly what the league is looking for in team management and the Lansing community has always been a hotbed for soccer in the United States.”

United has hired Jason Crist as the team’s first-ever head coach and general manager. Crist is currently in his 18th year as the women’s head coach at Spring Arbor University where he has compiled a record of 292-78-24 (.772) and won the NAIA National Championship in 2015. This season the Cougars have a 13-1 record and are the second ranked team in NAIA.

“We are excited to welcome Jason Crist, his wife Melissa and children Elijah and Samara to the Lansing United family,” Sampson said. “Jason has a proven track record as a successful coach and he has terrific relationships with many local players and coaches.”

“I am both excited and honored to be named as the Head Coach/GM of the Lansing United Women.  I have been able to watch and admire what Jeremy has been able to build with the Lansing United men over the past few years, including all the success in the NPSL and now the exciting move to the PDL,” Crist said. “We plan to recruit a roster that will allow us to play attractive, attack minded football that is fun to watch.  The roster will also include a heavy dose of hometown talent, as there are a wealth of excellent players to tap into in the capital area.  The desire is to create a product that is not only successful on the pitch, but also a culture that the Lansing community is excited about supporting, furthering the sense of community pride that the Lansing United men have already established.”

About United Women’s Soccer (UWS): UWS is a national women’s soccer league sanctioned by U.S. Soccer through the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA). UWS is a professionally operated league created for teams that meet high minimum standards. The season runs from May until the end of July, culminating in a National Championship match. The UWS player pool is comprised of college players, aspiring & former professionals and international stars. You can follow UWS on social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.