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2018 NWSL draft: Washington Spirit select Mississippi State forward Mallory Eubanks

After going for defensive players early, the Spirit added a creative forward to the mix

Caitlin Buckley

With the 16th overall pick in the 2018 NWSL draft, and their fourth pick of the day, the Washington Spirit selected Mississippi State forward Mallory Eubanks. After picking a defensive midfielder, a defender/midfielder, and a defender, Washington opted to add further competition to a stocked front line.

During her college career, Eubanks mostly functioned as a creative force rather than a goalscorer, posting 8 goals and 17 assists in four seasons with the Bulldogs. The Lexington, KY native was also a member of the US under-20 pool and was rated as the #17 prospect in the draft by Top Drawer Soccer. This past May, Eubanks joined the US under-23 team for the Open Nordic Tournament in Sweden. She also made the All-SEC Second Team in 2017.

Eubanks joins a deep set of forwards for Washington. Mallory Pugh, Ashley Hatch, and Cheyna Williams figure to be starters, but with players like Francisca Ordega and Cali Farquharson also contending for time and Arielle Ship likely to return from last year’s torn ACL part of the way through the season, competition will be fierce. If the Spirit stick to a 433, it seems likely to expect Eubanks to get time as a wide forward more than as a central striker.