Not that there was any doubt, but the first 2014 hardware goes to the Reign's new talented Scottish midfielder.
With the regular season over, the NWSL award season has begun with an award that involves no suspense. The Seattle Reign's Scottish international Kim Little has won the Golden Boot after scoring 16 goals in her first season in the league. Her total was well ahead of Amy Rodriguez' 13 for second place, and ahead of the 12 goals that won Lauren Holiday the Boot last season.
Little was incredibly consistent through the season, scoring 4 goals in April, 4 in May, 3 in June, 3 in July, and 2 in half of August. And her goals were decisive. She scored 7 goals that earned either a draw or a win (often from behind) that added up to 15 points in the standings. And that doesn't count the space she opened up for teammates while she was being double- or triple-teamed at the top of the box.
It's hard to pick a favorite from so many great strikes, which often included navigating a maze of defenders to put in a perfectly placed shot. But I think mine is her goal against the Dash on July 30, in which her first touch was so perfect it wiped two defenders out of the play and she calmly beat the keeper for goal #13 (via @8BitSports).
And that doesn't include the injury time goal in Portland that earned Seattle's first ever win against the Thorns. Or this seeing-eye injury time goal that beat 8 defenders to earn a late draw and avoid the Reign's first loss of the season:
In short, Little was a wonder. Amidst a massive offseason overhaul she was by far the biggest addition to the Seattle roster in the offseason. Now we're just looking forward to a few more goals in the playoffs en route to a championship. And then, no doubt, more awards await.
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