On a damp May night at Audi Field, the Washington Spirit held off Angel City FC, 4-2. Courtesy of Fredo Vasquez

By Fredo Vasquez 

Despite a weekend soaked in rain, the clouds parted just in time for an electrifying matchup between the Washington Spirit and Angel City FC at Audi Field on May 18. 

In a first half filled with action, it was Trinity Rodman who opened the score at the ninth minute. However, an own goal by Spirit defender Annaig Butel at the 20th minute gave the visitors a chance to get into the game. Three minutes later, Sydney Leroux gave Angel City the lead. But the Spirit refused to back down. Rodman scored a second goal in the 30th minute, and Casey Krueger added a third four minutes later. 

But the best goal was saved for last. Croix Bethoune and Ouleymata Sarr combined to cap 36 minutes of intense soccer and reward the 13,342 loyal fans who congregated in Buzzard Point. Bethoune attracted four Angel City defenders only to provide a clinical assist to Sarr, who tipped the ball above Angel City’s goalie, Dijana Haračić, to put the fans on their feet. Sadly, Sarr was forced to leave the field right before halftime after suffering an injury. 

With a two-goal advantage, the Spirit controlled the pace of the second half. The visiting team took control of the ball but a disciplined Spirit side made their possession irrelevant. The visitors would finish the game with 68 percent possession but only three shots on target. 

The victory sees the Spirit maintaining their strong position in the league standings, remaining in second place, just one point behind Kansas City.

Continuing a burgeoning tradition, Spirit players ended the match by approaching the supporter’s section to thank their fans and sign autographs for the young supporters who patiently waited for their heroes’ attention. 

June brings two more home matches, with the Spirit facing the San Diego Wave on June 15 and the North Carolina Courage on June 29 at Audi Field. 

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