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Three Spirit players make Starting XI, Mallory Pugh scores as USWNT draws France 1-1 in SheBelieves Cup

Boyds, MD (March 4, 2018) – Washington Spirit forward Mallory Pugh netted her ninth career international goal for the U.S. Women’s National Team in Sunday’s SheBelieves Cup match against France, providing the USA with their only score in the 1-1 draw at Red Bull Arena in New Jersey.

Pugh was one of three Spirit players named to USA head coach Jill Ellis‘ starting lineup for the game, along with defender Taylor Smith and midfielder Andi Sullivan. Pugh and Sullivan each played the first 72 minutes of action. It was Pugh’s 32nd international cap, Sullivan’s ninth and Smith’s ninth.

The USA’s only goal came in the 35th minute, when Pugh struck a loose ball on a scrum in the box following a free kick sent in by Megan Rapinoe. The powerful close-range shot deflected off the hands of France goalkeeper Sarah Bouhaddi and into the side of the net.

[FEATURE | Rose Lavelle looking forward to year-round chemistry with Washington Spirit, USWNT teammates]

Smith played the first 42 minutes on the USA back line, which has now conceded only one total goal through 180 minutes of action in the SheBelieves Cup. Smith was active for every minute of action during the USA’s win over Germany, the No. 2 team in FIFA’s Women’s World Rankings, and played an active role again on Sunday against No. 6 ranked France.

The USA will conclude the 2018 SheBelieves Cup on Wednesday, March 7 against England at Orlando City Stadium in Orlando, Florida. The game will kick-off at 7:00 p.m. ET and will be nationally televised on ESPNews.


The Washington Spirit launched single game ticket sales for the 2018 NWSL regular season on Friday. Tickets are are available now at Tickets.WashingtonSpirit.com or by calling the club’s ticket office at 301-591-0927.

On February 21, the club opened ticket sales for the March 31 regular season home opener against the Orlando Pride, and have already surpassed the 2,000 tickets out mark with several reserved seating sections sold out or down to single seats. Tickets for the Spirit-Pride match-up at the SoccerPlex sold out in 2017 with 5,200 fans in attendance, and this season’s game is expected to sell-out once again. [TICKETS]

Washington has announced two exhibition games which will be open to the public during the 2018 NWSL preseason. The Spirit will return to Evergreen Sportsplex in Leesburg, Va. for the second straight year on Saturday’s March 10 for a friendly against 22-time women’s college champion University of North Carolina. [TICKETS]

On March 17, the Spirit will host the first ever NWSL match played in Richmond, Va. when they face the North Carolina Courage at the historic City Stadium. More than 2,000 tickets have already been sold for the game. Tickets are available at RichmondKickers.com. [TICKETS]