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NWSL Draft 2019: Washington Spirit select North Carolina midfielder Dorian Bailey

A crowded central midfield just got more crowded for the Spirit

Jason Anderson

Continuing a busy 2019 NWSL College Draft, the Washington Spirit used the eighth overall pick to take North Carolina central midfielder Dorian Bailey. Bailey is the fourth player picked by the Spirit in today’s first round, joining Jordan DiBiasi, Samantha Staab, and Tegan McGrady.

Bailey’s career with the Tar Heels was a bit unusual, as injuries and a crowded midfield meant that she only emerged as a full-time starter this season. In 86 career appearances, she made 49 starts for Anson Dorrance’s side, putting up 17 goals and 17 assists in her collegiate career. Bailey is known for being a technical, smart player who can connect the dots either as a #6 or #8 in the midfield.

Bailey’s place with the Spirit is currently unclear. Washington is very deep in central midfield, with Andi Sullivan, Tori Huster, Rebecca Quinn, Meggie Dougherty Howard, and Joanna Lohman. However, with multiple as-yet-unnamed players heading to Sky Blue via trade and a hugely disappointing 2018, it may well be that the Spirit’s rebuild includes changes in the midfield.