GULF COAST TEXANS Win WPSL Championship

PENSACOLA, Fla. — They call Shakira Duncan “S-Money” and Tina Murray “T-Money.” Should it be “M-Money” for Mia Persson?

The Swedish midfielder punctuated a superb performance Sunday with two goals as the Gulf Coast Texans outclassed a weary, shorthanded Aztec MA side on their home field to claim their first Women’s Premier Soccer League championship.

Persson, from NAIA powerhouse Lindsey Wilson College, scored a 21st-minute opener, then completed a three-goals-in-10-minutes stretch midway thyrough the second half for the Texans (11-0-0) that ended any remaining doubt.

Danish forward Ida Gregersen and Jamaican star Duncan also tallied, and Murray, Duncan’s countrywoman, ignited from the left flank an attack that put up 23 shots (to five for Aztec) in a comprehensive performance at Ashton Brosnaham Stadium.

“My god, it’s amazing,” Murray, chosen the WPSL’s Player of the Year following the triumph, said as she celebrated with teammates. “Just the fact that we were undefeated and then in the final we win, 4-0. That’s a huge win right there. Woo! It was my first national final, I’m so excited. I wouldn’t want to play for another team.”

Gulf Coast, a second-year WPSL club, ran up a 7-0 scoreline in two final-four games against teams missing key players — most of them forced to depart for college preseasons — but the title was more about approach and philosophy than any kind of numerical advantage.

Most summer-league teams are collections of players, with huge rosters to absorb conflicts and commitments that force key personnel to skip training sessions and matches. The Texans are a team in the true sense: daily practices, off-field relationships, a full roster for nearly every match, home and away. more