FC Kansas City

FC Kansas City’s Becky Sauerbrunn is NWSL’s defender of the year

Updated: 2013-08-22T19:17:59Z

By SAM MCDOWELL

The Kansas City Star

That's four for four, in case you're counting.

FC Kansas City's Becky Sauerbrunn was selected Thursday as the defender of the year for the National Women's Soccer League, giving the Blues a clean sweep over the first week of awards season. Nicole Barnhart won the goalie of the year award on Wednesday, Erika Tymrak was selected as the rookie of the year on Tuesday, and Lauren Holiday took home the Golden Boot on Monday.

Again, four for four.

“We knew as a team we liked the way we play — it's eye-opening to know that general managers, coaches and players like it, too,” Sauerbrunn said. “This is really a team award, and it's a confidence builder for this weekend. We have a chance to do something really special.”

Two awards will be announced next week. The coach of the year will be revealed Monday, and the NWSL most valuable player will be announced Tuesday. All six awards are voted on by a combination of players, team general managers and media members.

A native of St. Louis, Sauerbrunn is the featured center back defender for FC Kansas City, which allowed 22 goals over the 22-game schedule, second fewest in the league. She missed three games for United States women's national team duty but played all 90 minutes in the remaining 19 matches. FC Kansas City right back Leigh Ann Robinson finished third in the voting for defender of the year.

FC Kansas City will play host to Portland at 1 p.m. Saturday in the NWSL semifinals at Shawnee Mission North District Stadium.

To reach Sam McDowell, send email to smcdowell@kcstar.com. Follow him at twitter.com/SamMcDowell11.

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