Abbotsford’s Bryana Buttar has signed with the University of Memphis Tigers women’s soccer program. (Tigers Instagram)

Abbotsford’s Bryana Buttar has signed with the University of Memphis Tigers women’s soccer program. (Tigers Instagram)

Abbotsford’s Bryana Buttar signs with University of Memphis

Abbotsford Senior grad, former UFV Cascades star joins NCAA women’s soccer program

Abbotsford’s Bryana Buttar is now officially a member of the University of Memphis Tigers women’s soccer team.

The school made the announcement on its website on Friday (July 30) morning.

She was named as one of three additions to the team, along with California’s Mackenzie Bray and Iceland’s Hildur Jónasdóttir.

“We are thrilled to be adding these three young ladies to our team,” stated Tigers head coach Brooks Monaghan. “All three bring a wealth of experience from where they come from and, though they play different positions, they are all very talented and I expect them to make us better.”

Buttar spent the early part of this year with the St. Albert, Alta.-based Impact FC of United Women’s Soccer. The UWS is a second-division pro-am women’s soccer league, considered to be just a step below the top-ranked National Women’s Soccer League.

RELATED: Abbotsford’s Buttar signs with Impact FC pro-am club

According to the UWS website, Impact FC played four games and finished with a 2-2 record. Buttar scored one goal with Impact.

The 2019 Abbotsford Senior Secondary School grad has been on the pitch for most of her life, and helped the Canadian U-15 girls soccer team to a gold medal at the inaugural CONCACAF U15 championships in the Cayman Islands back in 2014. She went on to excel at the youth level with Surrey United and with the Whitecaps FC Girls REX program.

Buttar went on to have an excellent rookie season with the UFV Cascades in 2019, collecting four goals in 15 games. She was named the Canada West rookie of the year that season, and was also named to the U Sport all-rookie team.

RELATED: Abbotsford’s Buttar named Canada West rookie of the year

She decided to transfer to Kingston, Ont.’s Queen’s University for 2020, but COVID-19 had other plans for that season.

The midfielder has already traveled to Tennessee and the team opens their 2021 season on Aug. 5 with an exhibition match against the University of Tennessee at Martin Skyhawks.

The Tigers play in the NCAA Division I’s American Athletic Conference and have been one of the conference’s top teams the past few seasons. Memphis won the AAC’s postseason tournament in 2018 and finished with an overall record of 17-4 (conference record 7-2) that year.

They followed that season up by finishing first and winning the conference’s regular season championship in 2019. That year they posted an overall record of 17-3-1 (conference record 8-0-1). The 2020 season saw Memphis finish second in the conference regular season standings with an overall record of 10-1-2 (conference record 6-0-1).

The South Florida Bulls have won three of the last four AAC postseason championships.

Memphis wraps up the season on Oct. 28 against the Southern Methodist University Mustangs. The closest game geographically to Abbotsford occurs on Oct. 7 when the Tigers travel to Oklahoma to take on the Tulsa Hurricanes.

The Tigers have a storied athletic history and notable alumni include basketball players Derrick Rose, Tyreke Evans and Anfernee ‘Penny Hardaway; football players DeAngelo Williams and Issac Bruce; and baseball player Dan Uggla.

For more on the team, visit gotigersgo.com/sports/womens-soccer.

abbotsfordsoccerUFV Cascades