Washington Spirit Re-Signs Six Core Players Ahead of 2019 Season
Boyds, Md. - The Washington Spirit has re-signed six key players ahead of the 2019 NWSL season. Meggie Dougherty Howard, Mallory Eubanks, Ashley Hatch, Tori Huster, Arielle Ship and Andi Sullivan have all inked new contracts with the club.
From Huster, Washington's longest-tenured player - to Sullivan, who was drafted No. 1 overall in the 2018 NWSL College Draft - the group of six features an array of versatile field players with a history of strong contributions to the Spirit.
These six players join the club's seven previously announced contracts, including: Meg Crosson, Cali Farquharson, Cheyna Matthews, Chloe Logarzo (loan), Amy Harrison, Aubrey Bledsoe and Paige Nielsen.
"We have a fabulous group of players returning to our 2019 squad," said Spirit Head Coach Richie Burke. "I'm really looking forward to getting going with all of them during our preseason preparation starting next week."
Dougherty Howard has played in 46-of-48 games during her first two seasons with the Spirit since being drafted out of the University of Florida in 2017. The 23-year-old midfielder enters her third NWSL season having already logged 3,359 minutes of playing time.
Eubanks was drafted by the Spirit in the second round of the 2018 NWSL College Draft out of Mississippi State University. She appeared in 12 games during her rookie campaign, earning five starts and totaling 516 minutes of playing time.
Hatch earned the Spirit's Golden Boot award in 2018, leading the team with four goals. Prior to joining the Spirit, she earned the 2017 NWSL Rookie of the Year award as a member of the North Carolina Courage.
Huster has been a member of the Spirit since the inaugural NWSL season in 2013. She made history in 2018 when she played in her 100th career game in the season opener against Seattle Reign FC. The 29-year-old played in 17 games last season, both in the midfield and on the back line.
Ship's promising rookie season in 2017 was cut short due to an ACL injury, and the ensuing recovery also cost her most of the 2018 campaign. The Cal Berkeley alum scored her second career goal in Washington's season finale, a 1-1 draw against Sky Blue FC.
Sullivan finished as runner-up for the 2018 NWSL Rookie of the Year award after playing an active role in Washington's midfield, appearing in 23 games and logging 1,984 minutes. She is currently representing the U.S. Women's National Team in the SheBelieves Cup alongside Spirit teammates Mallory Pugh and Rose Lavelle.
Transactions: Washington Spirit re-signs Meggie Dougherty Howard, Mallory Eubanks, Ashley Hatch, Tori Huster, Arielle Ship and Andi Sullivan
Meggie Dougherty Howard
Date of Birth: 07/27/1995
Hometown: Largo, FL
Last Club: University of Florida
Date of Birth: 06/04/1996
Hometown: Lexington, KY
Last Team: Mississippi State University
Date of Birth: 05-25-1995
Hometown: Gilbert, AZ
Last Team: North Carolina Courage
Date of Birth: 09/23/1989
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Last Team: Newcastle Jets
Date of Birth: 05/02/1995
Hometown: Westlake Village, CA
Last Team: University of California, Berkeley
Date of Birth: 12/20/1995
Hometown: Lorton, VA
Last Team: Stanford University
ABOUT THE WASHINGTON SPIRIT
The Washington Spirit is the professional women's soccer team based at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown, Md. Launched in 2012, the Spirit play in the National Women's Soccer League, the premier women's soccer competition in North America. For more information about the Spirit, visit www.WashingtonSpirit.com, follow the club on Twitter @WashSpirit and on Facebook at facebook.com/washingtonspirit.
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