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Lohman’s Header Keeps Spirit On Top in NWSL

Silver Spring’s own Joanna Lohman kept the Washington Spirit, Germantown’s hometown professional soccer team, undefeated and in first place in the National Women’s Soccer League. Lohman’s header allowed the Spirit to beat the Houston Dash 1-0 Saturday night in front of 3,545 fans at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Boyds.

The Spirit are now 4-01, with 13 points, and the win increases the Spirit’s lead at the top of the league by three points over second place team the Chicago Red Stars.

After a competitive first half, Lohman’s goal came for the Spirit in the 38th minute when defender Ali Krieger dribbled the ball up the right flank launched a long ball up to midfielder Christine Nairn. Nairn sent a cross into the penalty box, and Lohman leapt up to head the ball into the back of the net.

The Spirit had several opportunities to extend its lead early in the second half. The first came in the 58th minute when Dunn served a cross to Nairn. However, Nairn’s shot was blocked. After the Spirit collected the ball again, Krieger sent a cross into Argentinian forward Estefania Banini, who took a shot on goal, but the ball was once again blocked by the Dash’s defense.

Banini and Crystal Dunn were two of the most dangerous Spirit players in the final third. In the 79th minute, the Spirit earned a corner when Banini sent a ball to Dunn, who was making a near post run that later went out of bounds. In the 87th minute, Banini took a shot from outside of the box that was tipped over the bar by Williams, earning the Spirit another corner.