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Inside the first-ever NWSL Skills Challenge

Denise O’Sullivan: ‘We’re all on different teams, but it brings us together and we had a lot of fun’

(Photo Copyright Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports)

The National Women’s Soccer League held its first-ever Skills Challenge on Friday night ahead of Saturday’s championship game. Host Aly Wagner used the phrase “We’re making this up as we go” more than a few times, but there was a lot of laughter, there was loads of banter, and both the crowd and players went home entertained.

“It’s been absolutely fantastic,” North Carolina Courage midfielder Denise O’Sullivan said afterward. “I think we need to keep this going forward, and the league and sponsors have been great to put this on.”

The event, sponsored by CarMax, split players from each of the 10 NWSL clubs not competing in the championship match into two teams representing the East and West. The teams were then pitted against each other in challenges such as player shootouts, 2-on-2 TeqBall and a crossbar challenge.

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