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Goodbye CoCo

Veteran Sky Blue FC defender calls it a career before NWSL preseason

On the second day of pre-season, the Sky Blue FC's defensive corps just  got a little thinner.

Veteran defender CoCo Goodson announced her retirement from soccer. Goodson started 40 of 43 matches for Sky Blue in the last two years, including playing every minute of the  2013 season.

"I want to thank Sky Blue FC and the NWSL for allowing me to follow my dreams and play professional soccer," Goodson said. "I have made memories that will last me a lifetime and friends that will forever be in my lie. Thank you to everyone who has supported me throughout my career. I can't express how much I appreciate it. I have made the difficult decision to start the next chapter of my life and pursue a new career."

This could be a break for second-round draft pick Kristin Grubka, who is off a trip to Spain with the U.S. U23 Women's National Team. Cami Levin, Hayley Haagsma, Lindsi Gutshall and Meg Morris all are returning with defensive experience.

The competition will be played out in four preseason games this month.  The schedule is\

March 14 v. St. John's  at Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School. 2 p.m.

March 21 v. UNC at Mercer County Community College , 3 p.m.

March 25 v. Penn State at New Sports Complex, Palmyra, 8 p.m.

March 29 v. Rutgers at Rutgers, 7 p.m.

There is no admission for the matches against St. John's and Rutgers. Tickets for the UNC game is $10. Tickets for the Penn State match are $8 online and $10 at the gate.

SBFC opens its season in Kansas City on April 12 before its home opener at Yurcak Field against the Houston Dash and NJ native Carli Lloyd and this year's No. 1 draft choice, Morgan Brian.