Breakers Introduce Reserve Squad Ahead of 2014 Season

The Breakers reserve squad will add depth when National Team players like Heather O'Reilly depart for international duty - USA TODAY Sports

The Breakers improved their "development pathway" on Wednesday, announcing the construction of a full reserve squad.

After memorable freshman campaign that ended just shy of the NWSL playoffs, the Breakers will enter their second season with a full reserve squad. By adding top-tier talent from across the country, including recent college graduates and players with semi-professional and professional experience, the team will construct a roster for exhibition matches against other NWSL reserve teams. The reserve squad will also compete in the lower-level Women's Professional Soccer League (WPSL), while training with the Breakers first team.

"It is very important to set up a reserve team that mimics the senior team. With national team players missing games throughout the regular NWSL season, we need to pull up reserve players who are capable of competing at the top level, and are familiar with the coaching philosophies and senior squad as a whole," Breakers general manager Lee Billiard said. "The reserve piece also adds an additional component to our development pathway. With our new Breakers Academy youth program, our teams train and compete from ages under 9-18, then onto our college academy team, to our reserves, and onto the pinnacle of our pathway, the senior pro team."

In 2014, the Breakers College Academy will return for its second season, joining the Breakers reserves in WPSL play. The Academy squad completed a highly successful inaugural campaign last season, amassing a 6-3-2 record while qualifying for the WPSL playoffs. Boston College Star Stephanie McCaffrey led the way with 16 goals in 11 matches.

"[The Academy Team] is a great way for us to see the next group of players coming through the college system, along with us being able to help these players prepare for their fall collegiate seasons," Billiard said. "I was very impressed with the players who competed in 2013, and I am excited to see the amount of interest this program has generated with colleges and players from across the country."

Tryouts for the Breakers reserve team will be held March 1, 2014, at The University Sports Complex in Hanover, Mass.

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