USL W-League

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USL W-League
Founded 1995
Folded 2015
Country United States
Confederation CONCACAF
Level on pyramid 2
Promotion to None
Relegation to None
Last champions Washington Spirit Reserves
Most championships Los Angeles Blues
(4 titles)

The USL W-League was a North American women's soccer developmental organization.[1] The W-League was also an open league, giving college players the opportunity to play alongside established international players while maintaining their collegiate eligibility. The league was administered by the United Soccer Leagues system (the USL), which also oversees the men's United Soccer League and Premier Development League. The W-League announced on November 6, 2015 that the league will cease operation ahead of 2016 season.[2][3]


The W-League's inaugural season was in 1995. Originally called the United States Interregional Women's League, it later changed its name to the W-League. Although at its inception some of the league's franchises were barely above amateur level, it provided a professional outlet for many of the top female soccer players in the country. With professionals driving the level of play, the league made a very strong debut performance.

From 1995 through the 1997 season the W-League was a single tier format (all teams at the same division). This changed before the 1998 season when the W-League became a two tier league. The top tier/division was called W-1 and lower division, W-2. This division was in effect through the 2001 season – the first year of the new US Women's first division league WUSA. The W-League returned to a single tier format in the 2002 season.

The W-League grew to a maximum of 41 teams for the 2008 season, but then began contracting rapidly. By the time the league suspended operations in 2015, there were three, six-team conferences.[4] Of those 18 teams, eight went on to found United Women's Soccer[5] (though the two Canadian teams were denied entry) and another seven joined the WPSL[6][7]


127 unique teams participated in the W-League over the course of its history, 22 still existed (at varying levels of activity) as of Spring 2016; one has since been revived.


Charlotte Lady Eagles Ottawa Fury FC Cincinnati Ladyhawks Oklahoma Outrage Kentucky Fillies New Brunswick Power (W-League) Northern Virginia Majestics Carolina Dynamo (W-League) Toronto Inferno Jacksonville Jade New England Mutiny Springfield Sirens Houston Tornadoes North Texas Heat Austin Lady Lone Stars New York Magic New Hampshire Lady Phantoms New Jersey Lady Stallions Raleigh Wings Miami Gliders Kalamazoo Quest Orlando Ladyhawks Finger Lakes Heartbreakers Tampa Bay Xtreme Laval Dynamites Indiana Blaze Delaware Genies Atlanta Classics Jackson Chargers Charlotte Speed Central Jersey Splash Gulf Coast Chaos New Jersey Wildcats Rochester Ravens Chicago Red Eleven Cleveland Eclipse Denver Diamonds Buffalo FFillies Alabama Angels Silicon Valley Red Devils Norcal Shockwaves Madison Freeze Lehigh Valley Cougars Long Island Rough Riders (W-League) Virginia Beach Piranhas Boston Renegades Arizona Heatwave Rhode Island Lady Stingrays Maryland Pride Rockford Dactyls Connecticut Lady Wolves Columbus Ziggx San Francisco Nighthawks California Storm Philadelphia Frenzy Dallas Lightning Southern California Nitemares Wichita Lady Blues Tulsa Roughnecks (W-League) San Diego Top Guns Mass Bay Crusaders Cincinnati Leopards
Colorado Storm Colorado Pride Braddock Road Stars Elite Arizona Strikers FC Gulf Coast Texans Bay Area Breeze VSI Tampa Bay FC (W-League) Carolina Elite Cobras Dayton Dutch Lions WFC Los Angeles Strikers Fredericksburg Impact Victoria Highlanders Women Washington Spirit Reserves Washington Spirit D.C. United Women Santa Clarita Blue Heat North Jersey Valkyries Colorado Rush Women Quebec Dynamo ARSQ Buffalo Flash Pali Blues New Jersey Rangers Tampa Bay Hellenic Kalamazoo Outrage (W-League) Los Angeles Legends (W-League) FC Indiana Connecticut Passion Cary Lady Clarets West Virginia Illusion Hudson Valley Quickstrike Lady Blues Fredericksburg Lady Gunners Laval Comets K-W United FC (W-League) Minnesota Lightning Washington Freedom Futures Washington Freedom Cocoa Expos Women Atlanta Silverbacks Women Toronto Lady Lynx Vermont Lady Voltage San Diego Sunwaves Central Florida Krush London Gryphons Cleveland Internationals Women Western Mass Lady Pioneers Richmond Kickers Destiny Fort Wayne United Soccer Club Fort Wayne Fever (W-League) Michigan Hawks Bradenton Athletics Sudbury Canadians St. Louis Archers Montreal Xtreme Edmonton Aviators Women Calgary Wildfire Vancouver Whitecaps FC (women) Columbus Lady Shooting Stars Seattle Sounders Women Asheville Splash Northern Kentucky TC Stars Albuquerque Crush Mile High Edge South Jersey Banshees Windy City Bluez Memphis Mercury Kansas City Mystics Portland Rain Texas Odyssey

W-League member(†)   WUSA / WPS / NWSL   WPSL-WLS-UWS   inactive / exhibition / other   (*) indicates championship

Past champions[edit]

For 1998 through 2001 the W-League was divided into two divisions: W-1 (the top division) W-2 (the lower division). The numbers in parentheses indicate the number of titles a club has won if they have won multiple titles. Click on year for W-League season summaries.