HARRISON, N.J. – Sky Blue FC has signed midfielder Nicole Baxter to a full contract following her two short-term contract stints with the team in 2020, the National Women’s Soccer League team announced Thursday.
Terms of the deal include a one-year contract with a second-year option.
“I am really excited to be returning to Sky Blue in 2021,” Baxter said in a statement. “It was a goal of mine throughout this year to earn a long-term role on this team. As weird as 2020 has been, it has been a really good opportunity for me to get time an experience that is typically hard to come by in this league. I think I was able to grow a lot because of that experience. I am just really excited that I now have the opportunity to return to the club and continue working with such a great group of people and contributing in whatever way that I can.”
The New Jersey native made her NWSL debut during the NWSL Challenge Cup during the Sky Blue FC match against the then Utah Royals FC. She made her first NWSL start in the final match of the 2020 NWSL Fall Series, a 3-1 victory over the Chicago Red Stars for Sky Blue. Baxter completed 80 percent of her passes across all competitions.
“Nicole has used the opportunity of the unconventional 2020 season to demonstrate some of the key qualities of a professional in the league,” Sky Blue FC head coach Freya Coombe said in a statement. “She has real determination to succeed, great quality on the ball, and the ability to create in the final third. She is highly motivated to continue her journey in the NWSL and I look forward to the 2021 season with her.”
Added Sky Blue FC general manager Alyse LaHue: “It has been fantastic to watch Nicole’s journey to earning a full contract at Sky Blue. She is the epitome of persistent hard work and brings so much to the Club both on and off the pitch.”
Sky Blue FC will begin the 2021 pre-season Feb. 1 with the 2021 NWSL Challenge Cup set to kick off mid-April. The team is preparing for a 24-game season beginning in mid-May.