Misc Soccer News

Former Gonzaga University Star Jodi Ülkekul to Join Spokane Zephyr FC

Spokane Zephyr FC

June 4, 2024 – USL Super League (USLSL)
Spokane Zephyr FC News Release

A former Zag is making her return to Spokane – this time competing at the highest level of U.S. professional women’s soccer.

Jodi Ülkekul, who played for the Gonzaga women’s soccer team from 2015 to 2018, is coming back to the city she once called home. She will join Spokane Zephyr FC for its inaugural season, with her signing pending league and federation approval.

“Women’s professional football belongs in Spokane,” Ülkekul said. “This is such a special city with a community that has a significant place in my heart. It feels like I’m coming home, and I can’t wait to play for the supporters that fuel the sports scene here so proudly.”

The Sammamish, Washington native started in 69 of her 74 career matches as a Zag, accumulating seven goals and eight assists in a four-year span. As a junior and senior, she served as co-captain and helped the program achieve a 20-12-5 record across those two seasons.

While Ülkekul led Gonzaga’s back line, she has played both forward and defender professionally, including her stint with Seattle Reign FC. She initially signed a National Team Replacement Players contract, but recently competed for the club in the preseason as a non-roster invitee.

Prior to joining the Seattle Reign, Ülkekul played overseas with CD Castellón in Spain and AS Roma in Italy.

“We can’t wait to have Jodi back in Spokane to add in a big way to the team’s hometown feel,” said Katie Harnetiaux, President of USL Spokane and principal of Aequus Sports. “We are happy to welcome this former Zag back home and can’t wait to see the fan reaction when she steps onto the ONE Spokane Stadium pitch.”

“She is a hard-working wide forward, strong on the ball, and always looking to make herself available in between the lines,” Harnetiaux continued.

A former walk-on at GU who quickly earned a scholarship, Ülkekul was a consistent starter over all four seasons. By her final season as a Bulldog, the team recorded a 10-win season for its best finish in West Coast Conference play in over a decade.

Ülkekul is set to join a talented group with Zephyr, which has already announced six other signings. Her future teammates include several other players with ties to the Seattle Reign.

Spokane Zephyr FC will play their first match Aug. 17 at ONE Spokane Stadium in downtown Spokane, Wash., as part of the new Division One USL Super League, a professional women’s league that sits atop the women’s soccer…

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