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2018 NWSL Draft: Washington Spirit select Duke Blue Devils defender Schuyler DeBree

With the 11th overall pick, the Spirit bolstered their defense

Caitlin Buckley

With the first pick of the second round, the Washington Spirit selected Schuyler DeBree, a Duke defender. DeBree played for the Spirit Reserves in 2015 when the side won the W-League title. DeBree was a four-year starter at Duke and she can play as both an outside back and as a center back.

Defense was the most pressing need for the Spirit last year who allowed 48 goals over the season and carried a -18 goal differential. A recent trade that brought North Carolina and USWNT right back Taylor Smith to the Spirit should help the outside back situation, and DeBree will likely be used as a center back perhaps alongside Shelina Zadorsky or Whitney Church.

“I’m so excited for this next chapter,” said DeBree at the draft.

Earlier in the draft the Spirit selected Stanford and Northern Virginia native Andi Sullivan and then with the third pick selected another Duke product, Canadian international Rebecca Quinn who is a midfielder/defender.

DeBree previously played with Spirit midfielder Meggie Dougherty Howard during the 2015 Spirit Reserves season under Spirit assistant coach KJ Spisak.