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EXPANSION NEWS: Hudson Valley Crusaders Joins United Women’s Soccer

01/22/2024, 8:30pm EST

Hillsborough, NJ -- United Women’s Soccer is excited to announce the addition of the Hudson Valley Crusaders to UWS League One. Capitalizing upon its success in UWS2 last season as the 2023 Northeast Conference Champions, the Hudson Valley Crusaders will continue their mission of growing the sport of women’s soccer in the Hudson Valley region by fielding a team in League One. Aside from its two women’s teams, the Crusaders operate youth camps and weekend programs for 3–6-year-olds.


“We are excited about the Hudson Valley Crusaders joining UWS League One for this upcoming season. In touring the facility and meeting with staff, it is apparent that the team is on an upward trajectory in meeting its mission. UWS looks for not only on-field success, but a dynamic plan for off-field achievements as well. The support of civic leadership and community involvement ae pillars that UWS values when looking at expansion. The success that they demonstrated in UWS2 will translate well as they make the jump to UWS”, stated League Commissioner Joe Ferrara.


The Crusaders will play its home matches at SUNY New Paltz University in New Paltz, NY once again this season. The South Turf field was built in the fall of 2014 and features a state-of-the-art drainage system. The convenient location of the campus will attract fans from its surrounding community and beyond.

The Crusaders are coached by Mitchell Kazanjian. Kazanjian coached the UWS2 team last season and hopes to find the same success with the first team in 2024. Prior to joining the Crusaders, Kazanjian coached at the Colorado Military Academy and was the Director of Coaching for Zion Astro club based in Liberia, Africa.


"We are excited and grateful to bring the highest level of women's soccer to New Paltz and provide a pathway for all of the talented women in the area. This is a great next step for the program and will provide strong competition for the future, current, and former college soccer players of the Hudson Valley. At the Crusaders, we are passionate about providing a highly competitive, positive, and professional athletic environment for female athletes and the United Women's Soccer League enables us to do all of that and more”, stated owner Hannah Esslie.


For more information visit, or contact Hannah Esslie at



For More Information on the Crusaders


United Women’s Soccer is a national pro-am league founded in December 2015 on the basis of providing equality, opportunity and respect for the women’s game. UWS has proven to be an innovative league that has paved the way for the further advancement of women’s soccer. Ninety-plus teams based in the United States and Canada comprise two distinct levels of competition: UWS and UWS League Two (UWS2).


With over 23 NWSL draftees & 100 professional contracts to its name, UWS provides high level competition for college players, aspiring & former professionals, and international stars. The season runs from May until the end of July, culminating in a National Championship.


Stay connected on social media: FacebookTwitterInstagram & LinkedIn. Media can contact the UWS Communications office by e-mail at Visit the league’s official website at Interested team applicants can contact League Commissioner Joe Ferrara at

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