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San Diego Wave FC acquire Madison Pogarch in exchange for Tegan McGrady

League leader swaps left backs with Thorns.

NWSL: Houston Dash at Portland Thorns FC Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

San Diego Wave FC announced on Monday they have traded to acquire defender Madison Pogarch from the Portland Thorns. In exchange, San Diego have sent defender Tegan McGrady to Portland.

Pogarch, 24, had been with the Thorns since 2019, when she was signed undrafted out of Rutgers University. The Michigan native made 44 appearances across all competitions for the Thorns, including 14 appearances combined in Challenge Cup and league play this season, posting three assists.

“Bringing in Pogarch will add so much value to our current roster both on the field and in our environment,” San Diego Wave FC Head Coach Casey Stoney said in a team statement. “Po, as she is known, arrives here with such glowing character references from those that have played and worked with her. I’m excited to see what she can add to our environment.”

It appeared Pogarch was looking for a new location, however.

“Early in the season, Po approached us and said if the right opportunity presented itself with a new club she would be open to that discussion, and along with Po we felt this was the right situation. We wish her all the best as she heads to San Diego,” said Karina LeBlanc, Thorns FC general manager, in a Thorns statement.

The departure of McGrady, however, is bittersweet. McGrady had effectively been San Diego’s starting left back, and Pogarch plays the same position so it appears she could be in line to be the new starter at the position. After speaking brightly about working with Wave FC head coach Casey Stoney, losing the player will certainly be much discussed.

“On behalf of the club, I thank Tegan for everything she has done for San Diego Wave FC in her time here,” San Diego Wave General Manager Molly Downtain said. “As part of our inaugural roster, Tegan made an impact on and off the field and she’ll always be part of the Wave family.”

San Diego are back in action on Saturday, when they will face the Chicago Red Stars in Illinois.

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