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NCAA champ, All-American among top women's soccer candidates

By RICK PETERSON

TopSports.news

EDITOR'S NOTE: Over the coming weeks, TopSports.news will recognize hundreds of Shawnee County's all-time greats in 25 sports/categories as part of our Best of the Best project. Readers will have the opportunity to vote through July, with the Top 25 in all categories announced in August. To cast a vote for the Best of the Best, click on: https://linkto.run/p/9MB02JDDEmail votes/nominations will also be accepted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Women's soccer at the high school and college level have not been around nearly as long as other sports, with the first Kansas State High School Activities Association state tournament not held until 1993 and several state colleges not starting soccer until later.

But there's still no shortage of candidates to pick from in the TopSports.news Best of the Best women's soccer poll.

Former Shawnee Heights star Leea Murphy was part of an NCAA national championship team at North Carolina while another former T-Bird, Jessica Mainz, earned All-America honors for Washburn University. 

Jessica MainzJessica Mainz [Washburn Athletics]

Darby HirschDarby Hirsch [Fort Hays State Athletics]

Several other local products have gone on to stand out at the collegiate level, including Washburn Rural grad Darby Hirsch, who finished her career at Fort Hays State ranking among the Tigers' career leaders in multiple statistical departments.

Rural has been a perennial state high school contender, advancing to the Class 6A final four seven straight seasons, while Hayden has won three state team titles, Shawnee Heights won in 2004 and Topeka West won the city's first-ever state championship in '01.

 There are 25 candidates in all listed to pick from at https://linkto.run/p/9MB02JDD while readers are encouraged to write in the names of their favorites.

Vote as many times as you wish, with the only requirement that eligible candidates must have grown up in Shawnee County or attended one of the county's 10 high schools.

Final selections will be based on reader vote as well as input from TSN contributors and current and past local sports media professionals.   

Votes will be accepted through July 31 before TSN publishes our Best of the Best lists in August.

NEXT UP: Men's soccer.

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