Whitecaps FC women add veteran defender and English international

Jeffers and Stokes bring roster to seven players

Demi Stokes

Photo Credit: 
Photo courtesy of TheFA.com

VANCOUVER, BC - Vancouver Whitecaps FC announced on Friday that defender Jenny Jeffers and midfielder/striker Demi Stokes have been added to the club’s 2012 United Soccer Leagues (USL) W-League roster – pending Canadian Soccer Association (CSA) and USL approval.

“I’m very pleased to add these two players to our roster,” said Jesse Symons, Whitecaps FC women’s head coach. “Jenny brings veteran leadership to our squad and knows what it’s like to play for a championship team, and Demi is a rising young player who has played on the international level for England and will add pace and creativity to our attack.”

Jeffers, 26, joins Whitecaps FC after playing with Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL) club New York Fury in 2011, making nine appearances. Prior to playing with New York Fury, Jeffers spent the 2011 preseason with Women’s Premier Soccer (WPS) club Philadelphia Independence. In 2010, the Lake Zurich, Illinois, native played for USL W-League champions Buffalo Flash, registering one assist while starting 14 of her 15 appearances – including winning the 2010 W-League Championship final against Vancouver Whitecaps FC. In 2009, Jeffers suited up for W-League side Chicago Red Eleven, playing nearly every minute of the season while starting all 13 matches. During the 2008 W-League season, Jeffers made 18 appearances for FC Indiana, registereing one assist as the Lionesses made it to the W-League Championship final before falling 2-1 to Pali Blues. Jeffers also competed in the W-League in 2007, playing every minute for Ottawa Fury.

From 2003 to 2006, Jeffers played four successful seasons of National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) soccer at the University of Tennessee, scoring two goals and registering five assists in 85 appearances for the Lady Volunteers, including 70 consecutive starts over her last three seasons – the fourth longest streak in Tennessee program history.

Stokes, 20, comes to Vancouver after completing her first season of NCAA soccer at the University of South Florida. During the 2011 season, the native of South Shields, England, started 11 of her 14 appearances, leading the Bulls with 12 points while scoring four goals and registering four assists. Prior to coming to North America, Stokes played two seasons at England’s Gateshead Sports College (2009-2011). From 2008 to 2011, Stokes also played with the women’s team of renowned club Sunderland AFC. In 2009, she helped Sunderland win the Northern Division of the FA Women’s Premier League to earn promotion to the National Division, while also helping the Black Cats reach the FA Cup final against Arsenal Ladies FC before ultimately falling 2-1 to the Gunners.

Internationally, Stokes has represented England at the U-17, U-19, U-20, and U-23 levels. In 2010, the English attacking player started two of three appearances for her country at the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. That year, she also started four of her five appearances for England at the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) Women’s U-19 Championship, as they ended up runners-up at the tournament. In her first appearance in the UEFA Women’s U-19 Championshipin in 2009, Stokes helped England capture the tournament title, defeating Sweden 2-0 in the final.

Tickets are now on sale for the 2012 Whitecaps Women’s Soccer Series presented by Kia. To purchase tickets, visit whitecapsfc.com/wtickets.

Whitecaps FC play their first home match on May 18 at Langley's MacLeod Athletic Park against Colorado Rush. As in the past two seasons, Whitecaps FC will play their W-League home matches in various communities in British Columbia as part of the Whitecaps Women’s Soccer Series presented by Kia. Find the full Whitecaps FC 2012 W-League schedule HERE.