The Royals’ newest team member, Kelley O’Hara, comes to Salt Lake City with 20 years of soccer experience. Her distinguished career accomplishments range from the 2009 MAC Hermann Trophy winner, to 100+ caps for the Women’s National Team, to playing a multitude of roles at each level.
From 2005-2008, O’Hara scored 24 goals in 25 U-20 caps, and was a member of the fourth-place United States U-20 Women’s National Soccer Team that competed in the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship in Russia. During the 2006 FIFA Championships, she scored two goals, one against the Congo and one against Germany. The following year, O’Hara returned to the U-20 national team to compete in the 2007 Pan American Games, tallying four goals. O’Hara’s final U-20 appearance was in July of 2008 during the CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship in Puebla, Mexico. O’Hara finished her U-20 career as the third all-time leading scorer in US history, and sixth in caps.
O’Hara earned her first senior national team cap in March of 2010 as a substitute in a friendly against Mexico. The Georgia native saw substantial playing time with the team in 2009 when she was called up to replace an injured teammate in a send-off match against Japan. During the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup, O’Hara saw the field once in the final group stage game against Sweden.
In 2012, former United States Women’s National Team Head Coach, Pia Sundhage, converted O’Hara to an outside back. On January 22, 2012, O’Hara made her first start at the left back against Guatemala in the Olympic qualifiers and collected three assists. O’Hara made her first start at right back in the same tournament in a match against Costa Rica. During the 2012 Olympic games, O’Hara was one of three players to play every minute for the United States.
O’Hara returned to the National Team for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup and made her first start of the tournament in the quarterfinal game against China PR. O’Hara scored her first career international goal in the United States 2-0 victory over Germany in the World Cup Semifinals.
In total, O’Hara boasts a total of 102 caps and two goals in her senior national team career.
In the summer of 2009, O’Hara played for the Pali Blues of the USL W-League, scoring four goals. At the 2010 WPS Draft, she was drafted third overall by FC Gold Pride. As a rookie, she led the Pride to a first place regular season finish and WPS Championship. In November 2010, the FC Gold Pride ceased operations and O’Hara was signed by the Boston Breakers. In her two seasons in Boston, O’Hara scored ten goals.
O’Hara joined NWSL’s Sky Blue FC on January 11, 2013. While in New Jersey, O’Hara played a legion of positions including forward, winger, right-back, and central midfielder. Although she primarily saw time as a defender, O’Hara recorded 11 goals & 15 assists in 57 appearances.
O’Hara played collegiately for Stanford. In 2006, she led the Cardinals in scoring, with nine goals, and points, with 20. O’Hara finished the year as a finalist for Soccer Buzz National Freshman of the Year. O’Hara improved her sophomore year not only leading the Cardinals in goals (9) and points (23), but also in game winning goals (4) and shots (65). She was given Stanfords ‘Block S’ outstanding player award for the second connective year and named a third team All-American by Top Drawer Soccer. Following the end of the 2008 season, O’Hara was named to the NSCAA All-American second team and MAC Hermann Trophy Watchlist for the second consecutive year. She also nabbed first team All-West Region honors with Soccer Buzz and NSCAA, as well as being named to the Top Drawer Soccer and All Pac-10 second teams.
O’Hara’s senior season in 2009 still lives in Cardinal lore. Her 26 goals and 65 points set single season records at Stanford, while pacing the nation in both categories. Amid numerous other honors, O’Hara took home the 2009 MAC Hermann Trophy as college soccer’s best player, becoming the first Stanford player in program history to win the award.
O’Hara began participating in youth soccer in 1997 when she joined the Peachtree City Lazers. Her youth career continued two years later with the Lightning Soccer Club before joining the team at Starr’s Mill High School. The Georgia native played all four years on the varsity team, and captained the team her junior and senior years, leading the Panthers to the 5A state title in 2006. O’Hara graduated Starr’s Mill with a myriad of honors including Parade All-American, four years All-State, and Gatorade Georgia State Player of the Year.
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