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USWNT Forward Mallory Pugh Joins NWSL club Washington Spirit

Former U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year acquired by the Washington Spirit

The National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) announced that U.S. Women’s National Team forward Mallory Pugh, a newly allocated U.S. Soccer Federation Player, has been acquired by the Washington Spirit utilizing its number one spot in the Distribution Ranking Order.

“We are thrilled with the addition of Mallory Pugh to the NWSL and excited to have her join the Washington Spirit,” NWSL Managing Director of Operations Amanda Duffy said. “Mallory’s a dynamic talent and one of the top young players in the world. We look forward to her continued development at the club and international levels in the years to come.”

Pugh became the youngest player since 2005 to make her debut for the U.S. Women’s National Team when she earned her first cap on January 23, 2016 at the age of 17 years, 8 months and 25 days. She scored in that match against the Republic of Ireland and has gone on to tally four goals in 22 international appearances thus far during her budding career.

“I am very excited to begin my career in the NWSL and with the Washington Spirit,” said Pugh. “Being part of a professional team will allow me to grow and develop as a player, and I look forward to helping the Spirit win championships.”

The Highlands Ranch, Colo. native and Real Colorado product became the second youngest women’s soccer Olympian in U.S. history when she was named to the 18-player U.S. roster for Rio 2016. Pugh made three appearances at the Summer Games, scoring against Colombia during the Group Stage, making her the youngest American to score in an Olympics. She also played 114 minutes in the quarterfinal match against Sweden.

During her whirlwind career with the U.S. Youth National Teams, Pugh scored 15 goals in 12 appearances with the U-17 WNT and captained the U.S. team that finished fourth at the 2016 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Papua New Guinea last December. She was also a key player at the 2014 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Canada at the age of 16, starting all four matches at the tournament. Pugh finished her U-20 international career with 19 goals in 29 caps.

Pugh, who turned 19 on April 29, was previously named the 2015 U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year as well as the 2015 Gatorade National Girls Soccer Player of the Year as a high school junior. She was also named the 2014 National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Youth Girls National Player of the Year.

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