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Vera Pauw out as head coach of Houston Dash

Photo Copyright Erica McCaulley for The Equalizer

For the second consecutive offseason the Houston Dash are in the market for a head coach.

The Dash announced Thursday that Pauw informed the team that she would not seek a renewal of her contract, which was a one-year deal. Pauw took over last November as the team’s second ever coach.

“While the Houston Dash is a phenomenal club with huge potential and an amazing fan base, I have decided to not pursue a contract extension, ” Pauw said in a statement. “Although we set club records in many categories and stayed in the playoff race until the final week of the season, it is best for me to go back to my husband in The Netherlands.”

Pauw’s tenure in Houston had a rocky start. She traded down from the 3rd to 6th pick on draft day for Lindsay Agnew. Then on draft day, she executed the now infamous trade for Christen Press who never reported to the team. With that situation hanging over the club and a slew of inexperienced players in important roles, the Dash looked dreadful during an 0-3-2 start.

Things began to turn in a 3-2 victory at Sky Blue in early May. Pauw then salvaged the Press move by shipping her rights back to Chicago in exchange for Sofia Huerta and Taylor Comeau. With those two playing key roles the team made a late charge up the table. They had a chance to be .500 for the first time and to finish with more goals scored than conceded for the first time but were drubbed 5-0 by the North Carolina Courage in the final game of the season.

Pauw finished her NWSL tenure 9-10-5. The Dash join the Washington Spirit and Orlando Pride as NWSL clubs with coaching vacancies.

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