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San Diego Wave FC 2022 Player Postmortem: Sydney Pulver

Rookie has cup of coffee at NWSL level.

NWSL: San Diego Wave FC at NJ/NY Gotham FC
Pulver (left) in action for San Diego.
Jonathan Jones-USA TODAY Sports

How many players have played in an NWSL game in the league’s history? Not that many, to be honest, and Sydney Pulver joined that club in 2022.

The midfielder was drafted by San Diego Wave FC out of Washington State, No. 25 overall, in the 2022 NWSL College Draft. San Diego’s rookie class was huge, with seven players in that group getting playing time, including Pulver. And yet, the squad was balanced, with Wave FC putting together by far the best season for a true expansion team in league history.

Here are Pulver’s stats in 2022 with Wave FC:

Sydney Pulver San Diego Wave FC 2022 Statistics

2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
2022 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
Challenge Cup 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Regular Season 1 0 7 0 0 0 0 0 0
Playoffs 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 1 0 7 0 0 0 0 0 0

Pulver had to bide her time to get playing time, which she got in June, when she came off the bench in Wave FC’s 3-0 romp over Gotham FC. It was a feel-good game for San Diego with the internationals away at tournaments, and getting contributions from the reserves, including deep reserves like Pulver, was a testament to how ready they were for the moment.

And that was pretty much it for Pulver on the field in 2022. San Diego head coach Casey Stoney rotated her squad quite a bit, but it seemed like Pulver was a bit on the outside looking in during the season. Still, she hit the field and made her professional dream a reality, which is terrific.

As for the future, we’ll see what happens. I think there’s a pretty good chance Pulver will not return to San Diego next year, based on the playing time she saw, but the good news is the women’s game is due an expansion in the next year, with the USL Super League scheduled to launch, and NWSL expansion on the horizon beyond that. Additionally, a player like Pulver coming from a good NCAA program can usually find a club in Europe should she want to go out for a foreign adventure, so that may be an option as well.

Either way, I don’t think this is the end of Sydney Pulver’s story as a pro soccer player, but we’ll see what’s up next for her.

What do you think? Leave a comment below.