CHICAGO (Aug. 8, 2017) – Washington Spirit forward Arielle Ship was voted the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) Player of the Week by the NWSL Media Association for Week 15 of the 2017 NWSL season.
Ship, 22, had a goal and two assists as she recorded the first points of her professional career to lead the Spirit to a 4-1 road win over Sky Blue FC as Washington rallied for their first comeback victory of the season and snap a four-game winless run.
The Westlake Village, Calif. native scored her first NWSL goal in the 51st minute to get her team back on level terms against Sky Blue FC as a deft first touch from the rookie took her by her defender before she blasted a sharp-angled effort into the top-left corner.
The U-23 U.S. international then turned provider on the next two goals for Washington as the Spirit exploded for four goals in the second half. In the 61st minute, she used her speed to seize upon a defensive miscue and get a touch on the ball to set up the game-winning goal by Cheyna Williams. Then in the 73rd minute, Ship threaded a pass through traffic into the path of fellow rookie Meggie Dougherty Howard, who stroked a low shot past Sky Blue FC goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan for her first professional goal. (Watch highlights)
Ship was taken by the Seattle Reign FC with the No. 26 overall selection in the 2017 NWSL College Draft in January after a standout career at CAL. She was traded, along with a third-round pick in the 2018 college draft, to the Spirit less than two weeks later in a deal that sent Canada international Diana Matheson in the other direction.
Ship joins Orlando Pride forward and U.S. international Alex Morgan as the only CAL players to be voted the NWSL Player of the Week.
It is the first time Ship has been honored as the NWSL Player of the Week and the 11th time a Washington Spirit player has won the award. She is the first member of the 2017 draft class and the fourth-youngest player in NWSL history to earn the accolade.
The Washington Spirit will return to action with two games in Week 16 – first on Tuesday, Aug. 8 at 7:30 p.m. ET against the Orlando Pride at Orlando City Stadium in Orlando, Fla. Then, the Spirit will take on the Boston Breakers in the NWSL Game of the Week on Lifetime on Saturday, Aug. 12 at 3:30 p.m. ET at Maryland SoccerPlex in Boyds, Md.
The NWSL Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by the NWSL Media Association, a collection of writers that cover the league on a consistent basis. For more information on the NWSL Media Association, follow them on Twitter.