Christen Press scores late game-winner, Red Stars beat Spirit 2-1
The Red Stars remain in third place in the NWSL
Chicago Red Stars forward Christen Press scored her 10th goal of the season on Saturday. (Photo credit: Jose Argueta/
Chicago Red Stars forward Christen Press scored her 10th goal of the season on Saturday. (Photo credit: Jose Argueta/

Chicago Red Stars forward Christen Press scored her 10th goal of the season in the 87th minute, off an assist from Julie Ertz, to give Chicago a 2-1 win on the road over the Washington Spirit in front of a crowd of 3,469 at the Maureen Hendricks Field at the Maryland SoccerPlex Boyds, Maryland.


The win stopped the bleeding for the Red Stars (9-6-5, 32 points), who lost three straight home games in a span of eight days last week and needed a win to stay in third place in the NWSL standings.


The loss eliminated the Spirit (4-11-4, 16 points) from playoff contention.


Press scored the game-winner just six minutes after the Spirit equalized. Ertz sent a long ball over the top as Press made a run down the left wing. Press got in behind the Spirit defense, collected the pass in stride, and cut around Spirit goalkeeper Didi Haracic before finishing from a tight angle to make it 2-1.

With the goal, Press becomes just the third player in NWSL history to score 10 or more goals in a season twice, joining Kim Little (2014 and 2015) and Jessica McDonald (2014 and 2016). Press scored 10 goals in 11 games in 2015. It’s her 34th career NWSL goal, moving her into sole possession of second place all-time.


Spirit forward Cheyna Williams tied the match 1-1 in the 81st minute, heading home a well-placed free kick from Mallory Pugh for her fourth goal of the season. The goal came on the Spirit’s first and only shot on goal in the match. Press fouled Caprice Dydasco to set up the free kick.

It’s the first assist of Pugh’s NWSL career.


Red Stars midfielder Kristie Mewis, who was just traded on Monday to Chicago by Washington, scored against her former team to opening the scoring. Starting in her first game with her new club, Mewis scored on assist by Danielle Colaprico in the 23rd minute to make it 1-0. Colaprico chased down a ball on the left wing that looked like it may have been out of bounds, but no whistle blew and Colaprico knocked it towards the area before passing it back to Mewis in the box. Mewis took a few touches before hitting it past two defenders and Haracic for her first goal with her new team.

Spirit rookie forward Arielle Ship was stretchered off in the 70th minute after suffering what appeared to be a right leg injury.

Spirit forward Francisca Ordega (right knee chondral defect) entered as a substitute in the 90th minute, her first appearance since July 8 because of injury.

The Red Stars will next take on the first-place North Carolina Courage at home on Sunday. The Red Stars are just one of four teams to beat the Courage this year, and they’ve done so twice: a 3-1 road win on May 21 followed by a 3-2 home win on May 27.


The next game for the Spirit is also against the Courage, as they welcome North Carolina to town for a midweek meeting on Wednesday night.

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