CARY, N.C. (Jan. 20, 2023) – The North Carolina Courage have agreed to a player-for-player trade with Angel City FC, acquiring versatile forward Tyler Lussi in exchange for NWSL veteran defender Merritt Mathias.
Lussi appeared in 20 games last season, making 16 starts and logging 1,460 minutes. She held a 63.5% tackle success rate and recorded 14 shots on the season. She also played in six Challenge Cup matches, with at least 75 minutes of action in five of them.
The 27-year-old was drafted by the Portland Thorns in the third round of the 2017 draft. She scored five goals with four assists across 42 games before being traded to Angel City FC ahead of their inaugural season in 2022.
“We are really happy to be adding Tyler to our roster. She has great experience in the league and someone we feel will step in and help us moving forward. She has a great energy to how she plays, and we feel it suits us and our style. We cannot wait for her to join us in here in North Carolina,” head coach Sean Nahas said.
A native of Lutherville, Maryland, Lussi is Princeton soccer’s all-time scoring and points leader across both the men's and women's programs. She was a two-time All-American for the Tigers and was a MAC Hermann semifinalist in 2015. Lussi was also a member of the U.S. U-23 National Team from 2015 through 2017, appearing in three matches.
Mathias has been in the NWSL since the opening season in 2013, playing in 183 career regular season matches with 163 starts. With eight post-season matches and 12 in the Challenge Cup, Mathias has a combined 203 matches overall. In nearly 16,000 minutes of field time, she has netted 10 goals and dished 19 assists.
"We cannot thank Merritt enough for all she did here with our club. She had an immediate impact upon arriving in 2018 where she helped us achieve great success over the years and will always hold a special place here in NC. As she moves on to ACFC we wish her the best of luck and know she will go and have an impact for them just as much as she did here for us," Nahas said.
Mathias spent the last five seasons with the Courage and was a member of the back-to-back NWSL Championship teams in 2018 and 2019. She’s played 83 regular season matches in a Courage kit. Prior to joining the Courage, Mathias played three seasons with then-Seattle Reign from 2015 through 2017 and started her NWSL career with FC Kansas City in 2013 and 2014.
The Courage roster remains at 22 players and Lussi becomes the seventh forward on the team, joining Tess Boade, Millie Farrow, Mille Gejl Jensen, Rikke Madsen, Kerolin Nicoli, and Brittany Ratcliffe. Draftees Haley Hopkins and Olivia Wingate will also be invited to preseason camp.