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Washington Spirit, Chicago Red Stars score early in 1-1 draw

The Washington Spirit and Chicago Red Stars played to a 1-1 draw at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown, Md., Saturday.

The Spirit’s (1-2-2, 5 points) Mallory Pugh sent a cross into the box in the fourth minute and Francisca Ordega finished it to give the host team a 1-0 lead.

Australian star Samantha Kerr, who was playing her debut match with the Red Stars (2-1-3, 7 points), fired a shot at Spirit goalkeeper Aubrey Bledsoe. The keeper deflected the shot, but Alyssa Mautz was in position to put away the rebound in the 20th minute.

The teams traded blows the rest of the way, but no one could put another shot on frame.

Kerr, the 2017 NWSL MVP, returned from competing with the Australian women’s national team and played a full 90 minutes. She led the Red Stars with six shots on goal.

Bledsoe had three saves, while Chicago’s Alyssa Naeher finished with two saves.

Bledsoe, who is in a starting role after serving as Orlando Pride starter Ashlyn Harris’ backup last seaosn, has a league-leading 29 saves.

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