Recap: Spirit takes all three points against Utah Royals FC

Washington Spirit  |   March 31, 2024


Washington, D.C. (03/31/2024) – The Spirit defeated Utah Royals FC, 2-1, during today’s Women’s Empowerment Day at Audi Field. This win continues the Spirit’s now 20-game unbeaten streak when leading at halftime – dating back to October 1, 2017 against Seattle Reign FC. Courtney Brown made her first start of the season, while Paige Metayer made her season debut.  


The Spirit and the Royals evenly battled out the first quarter of the match, with most of the action taking place in the middle of the field. The first real chance to score came in the 16th minute when Trinity Rodman picked the ball off a Utah defender and sent a cross to Ouleye Sarr, but the shot landed in the hands of Utah goalkeeper, Mandy Haught.  


Two minutes later, a collision in Utah’s box between Croix Bethune and a Royals defender resulted in a penalty kick for the Spirit. Andi Sullivan stepped up to take the penalty kick, the first non-Ashley Hatch penalty kick taken since October 1, 2022. Sullivan buried the ball into the right side of the net, successfully converting four of five penalty kick attempts in her regular season career – good for third-most in Spirit team history.  



Nine minutes later, a lofted cross by Rodman found the head of Sarr and the Spirit secured a 2-0 lead, launching Audi Field into a frenzy. This assist crowned Rodman as the career regular season assist leader in Spirit team history. This is also Rodman’s first time having assists in back-to-back games. Rodman has recorded 17 assists in all NWSL competitions, more than any other player since her debut in April 2021. 



Utah Royals FC dominated the thirteen minutes of first half stoppage time and continued that momentum to start the second half. The Spirit was forced to defend Utah’s high press, until two streaking runs up the right side of the field by Rodman seemed to turn the Spirit momentum back on. She continued her attacks with back-to-back plays showing off fancy footwork and slotted balls across the 18. A cross in the 57th minute led to a shot by Casey Krueger, denied only by the left goal post. 


Responding, the Royals turned up the pressure and made some crucial connections in the Spirit’s half, leading to a goal by Ally Sentnor in the 71st minute. Five minutes later, with the score now at 2-1, Aubrey Kingsbury made a game-saving block of a shot from Dana Foederer taken in the five-yard box. Kingsbury logged five saves, the second time she has done so this season.   



Next up, the Spirit travels to Houston to take on the Dash on Friday, April 12 at 8 p.m. ET.  Fans can watch the match on Prime.  


-NWSL Match Report- 

Match: Washington Spirit vs. Utah Royals 

Date: Sunday, March 31, 2024 

Venue: Audi Field (Washington, D.C.) 

Kickoff: 1:00 p.m. EDT  

Weather: Sunny, low-60s 


Scoring Summary: 

Goals  1  2  F 
Washington  2  0  2 
Utah Royals FC  0  1  1 


WAS – Andi Sullivan – 21’ (PK)
WAS – Ouleye Sarr – 30′ (assisted by Trinity Rodman)
UTA – Ally Sentnor – 71′ (assisted by Dana Foederer) 



WAS: 1 – Aubrey Kingsbury; 3 – Casey Krueger; 5- Annaig Butel; 9 – Tara McKeown; 14 – Gabby Carle; 7 – Croix Bethune; 12- Andi Sullivan (26-Paige Metayer- 85’); 17 – Hal Hershfelt; 2- Trinity Rodman; 11 – Ouleye Sarr (13- Brittney Ratcliffe-78’); 16- Courtney Brown 


Unused Substitutes:18 – Lyza Bosselmann; 28- Nicole Barnhart; 4- Lena Silano; 21- Anna Heilferty; 22- Heather Stainbrook; 27- Riley Tanner; 33- Ashley Hatch 


UTA: 1 – Mandy Haught; 8 – Kate Del Fava ; 18 – Kaleigh Riehl ; 3 – Olivia Smith-Griffitts ; 16 – Madison Pogarch; 6 – Agnes Nyberg; 19 – Frankie Tagliaferri (11- Ify Onumonu- 46’); 22 – Dana Foederer (20- Cameron Tucker- 82’) ; 4- Paige Monaghan (15- Brecken Mozingo- 72’); 9 – Allyson Sentnor; 33 – Hannah Betfort  


Unused Substitutes: 27 – Carly Nelson; 13 – Addisyn Merrick; 21- Mikayla Cluff; 24 – Emily Gray; 5 – Lauren Flynn; 7 – Michele Vasconcelos 


Stats Summary: WAS / UTA 

Shots: 17 / 13 

Shots On Goal: 6 / 6 

Shots Blocked: 7 / 2 

Saves: 5 / 4 

Tackles Won: 13 / 15 

Fouls: 11 / 11 

Offsides: 2 / 2 


Misconduct Summary: 

UTA – Dana Foederer – 29’ – Yellow Card 

UTA – Kate Del Fava – 50’ – Yellow Card 

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