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Washington, D.C. (06/03/2023) – The Spirit drew, 1-1, against Racing Louisville FC despite an early goal. With a start in today’s match, Trinity Rodman recorded her 50th NWSL regular season appearance. Rodman is the youngest Spirit to reach 50 appearances, passing Meggie Dougherty Howard. She is also the 19th Spirit player to reach this milestone, helping the Spirit set a new NWSL record for the most players to reach 50 appearances.
Rodman didn’t take long to strike on her momentous day, scoring in the 3’ after beating defenders multiple times inside the box.
— National Women’s Soccer League (@NWSL) June 4, 2023
The goal was the fastest of Rodman’s career, usurping her 6’ goal against North Carolina earlier this season. It is the fastest Spirit goal since 2018 and is tied for the second fastest goal (by minute) in the club’s history. Additionally, it marks the fastest goal scored at Audi Field in NWSL history, passing Sophia Smith’s goal in the 2022 NWSL Championship game.
Rodman’s goal was assisted by Ashley Hatch, who has recorded assists in back-to-back games for the first time in her career. Hatch now has five assists with the Spirit, tied for seventh in club history.
Defender Tara McKeown nearly joined the scoring action in the 19’ when she connected with the woodwork on a bomb from outside the box. Paige Metayer got a look at goal on a header that was redirected by Rodman towards goal but was ultimately saved by Louisville keeper Katie Lund.
The first half was all Spirit and Rodman. She later got a touch on ball near midfield, accelerated toward goal, but chipped the ball over the post. Moments later, Rodman scored a would-be brace after charging past the Louisville backline, but the goal would be called offsides after deliberation from the referees.
The Spirit ended the first half with ten shots, seven of which came from inside the box, compared to Louisville’s three. Touches inside the box were similarly lopsided as the Spirit’s 15 outmatched Louisville’s by nine.
However, out of the half, Louisville equalized the contest in a matter of minutes after the referee issued a foul on Spirit midfielder inside the box. Savannah DeMelo took, and made, the Louisville penalty. It was her eighth goal with the team, one away from tying the club record.
The goal is another second half score the Spirit have conceded against Louisville after allowing two earlier this season. In the series history, the Spirit have not allowed a single first half goal but have given up eight second half goals.
In the 66’, Rodman continued her impressive attack with a shot inside the box that hit the side of the net. It was her seventh shot of the game – a career high. Eleven minutes later, Rodman was fouled hard, drawing a red card in the 77’ only feet away from the box. The red card on Elli Pikkujämsä was the fastest in NWSL history, as Pikkujämsä was on the field for only 79 seconds before being ejected.
The Spirit attack was unrelenting, but still the team couldn’t find the back of the net. In the 86’ Sanchez connected on a header that hit the woodwork – the Spirit’s second of the match. Both teams battled through several minutes of stoppage time, but neither side conceded. The Spirit finished the game with 21 shots (15 inside the box) but only sent five on goal.
This season’s 4-1-5 (17 points) start is tied with the 2015 season for the third-best point total through 10 matches in club history. Tonight’s match was the team’s second draw in the same number of weeks and fourth consecutive draw against Racing Louisville FC, tied with the Louisville v. OL Reign matchup for the longest active streak of draws in a fixture.
Next up, the Spirit embarks on its third of four consecutive games played at Audi Field when they play Angel City FC on Saturday, June 3rd at 7:00 p.m.
-NWSL Match Report-
Match: Washington Spirit vs. Racing Louisville FC
Date: June 3, 2023
Venue: Audi Field
Kickoff: 8:00 p.m. EDT
Weather: Sunny, low-70s
WAS – Trinity Rodman – 3’
LOU – Savannah DeMelo – 51’ (PK)
WAS: 1- Aubrey Kingsbury; 14- Gabrielle Carle; 3- Sam Staab; 9- Tara McKeown; 19- Dorian Bailey; 26- Paige Metayer (39- Chloe Ricketts – 92’); 25- Marissa Sheva (7- Inès Jaurena; – 60’); 12- Andi Sullivan; 10- Ashley Sanchez; 2- Trinity Rodman; 33- Ashley Hatch
Unused Substitutes: 28- Nicole Barnhart; 18- Lyza Bosselmann; 22- Amber Brooks; 16- Maddie Elwell; 17- Nicole Douglas; 20- Civana Kuhlmann; 24- Lena Silano
LOU: 1- Katie Lund; 2- Lauren Milliet; 16- Carson Pickett; 20- Abby Erceg; 15- Julia Lester (4- Elli Pikkujämsä – 76’); 6- Jaelin Howell; 8- Ary Borges (19- Jordan Baggett – 84’); 7- Savannah DeMelo; 77- Wang Shuang (25- Rebecca Holloway – 84’); 5- Paige Monaghan (11- Thembi Kgatlana – 58’); 22- Kirsten Davis (29- Uchenna Kanu – 76’)
Unused Substitutes: 3- Zaneta Wyne; 99- Olivia Sekany; 21- Parker Goins; 9- Kayla Fischer
Stats Summary: WAS / LOU
Shots: 21 / 11
Shots On Goal: 5 / 3
Blocked Shots: 4 / 3
Saves: 2 / 3
Tackles Won: 9 / 10
Fouls: 12 / 9
Offsides: 1 / 1
WAS – Ashley Hatch – 39’ – Yellow Card
LOU – Elli Pikkujämsä – 77’ – Red Card
WAS – Dorian Bailey – 87’ – Yellow Card
LOU – Thembi Kgatlana – 98’ – Yellow Card