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Spirit work through growing pains in win over Red Stars

Photo by Erica McCaulley.


LEESBURG, Va.–Despite recording just eight minutes in the Washington Spirit’s first two games of the National Women’s Soccer League Fall Series, forward Jessie Scarpa has been a key part in two of her team’s three goals. Her late-game spark on Saturday led the Spirit to a 2-1 comeback victory against 10-player Chicago Red Stars.

“She is great coming off the bench, absolutely,” Washington coach Richie Burke said. “Jess is a good football player with a great IQ and knows where and when to go.”

Injuries have limited Scarpa’s influence in her first truncated season with the Spirit, but they haven’t limited her impact. Last week, Scarpa drew the foul that led to a penalty-kick equalizer in the loss to Sky Blue FC. This week, she toe-poked a cross from Crystal Thomas past goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher to give Washington the victory.

“Just having that under my belt is a good place to start in terms of confidence and just assuring myself I can play at this level,” Scarpa said.

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