Washington Spirit forward Arielle Ship’s season is over due a torn right ACL she sustained in a collision on Saturday’s game against the Chicago Red Stars. Ship is the sixth Spirit player to tear her ACL since last September. Cali Farquharson, Kelsey Wys, and Caprice Dydasco have each returned from their ACL injuries they sustained in 2016. Joanna Lohman and Line Sigvardsen Jensen are still in the process of rehabilitating their injuries.
Ship will miss the remainder of the season but if things go smoothly in her recovery, she could be ready for the start of next year’s season. Washington acquired Ship, a rookie from the University of California, in the trade that sent Diana Matheson - who has also since suffered a torn ACL - to the Seattle Reign. Ship appeared in 14 games, starting 9 times. Ship earned NWSL Player of the Week honors three weeks ago for her role in the Spirit’s 4-1 win against Sky Blue FC. Washington was down 1-0 at halftime and won 4-1 thanks to a goal and two assists from Ship. It was Ship’s first-ever pro goal.
“Injuries are always awful, especially ones that are generated by contact. I felt like that was Ari’s best game of the season so far, so it's really disappointing and sad that she'll miss the rest of the season,” Spirit head coach Jim Gabarra said in a team press release.
Ship suffered her injury in a collision with Red Stars midfielder Alyssa Mautz where Mautz struck Ship while Ship was reaching for a high ball. Ship landed awkwardly, sparking immediate concern from teammates. A disproportionate amount of the Spirit’s ACL injuries, which are usually non-contact injuries, have been from tackles or other contact.