Mallory Pugh has signed with U.S. Soccer and will join the Washington Spirit, the U.S. Soccer Federation announced on Saturday.
The Spirit selected Pugh with the top pick in the league’s distribution ranking order. Sports Illustrated's Grant Wahl reported earlier this month that Pugh had also received interest from Paris Saint-Germain as well as other teams within NWSL. The Spirit had the first opportunity to sign her, and the club wouldn't relinquish that right in a trade.
Pugh initially committed to play for UCLA, decided to forego her NCAA career to turn professional. The 19-year-old played in a spring game for the Bruins but never appeared in a regular season contest. She sat out her freshman season to play in the U-20 World Cup.
A rising star on the national stage, Pugh scored a goal for the U.S. women's national team at last summer's Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
She could make her NWSL debut in next Saturday's game against FC Kansas City at Maryland SoccerPlex.