Mallory Pugh isn’t particularly fond of the spotlight.
The 19-year-old forward is waaayyy more comfortable just playing her game. But her on-field ability is what has ultimately led to countless interviews over the past week as she prepares to do make her professional debut with the Washington Spirit of the National Women’s Soccer League.
Pugh’s getting extra attention because she’s a rarity in the women’s game: she skipped college soccer to go straight to the pros.
“I’d like to just play,” she said, laughing.
The only other prominent American woman to turn professional out of high school was Lindsey Horan , who passed up a scholarship to North Carolina to play professionally in France before joining the NWSL’s Portland Thorns last year.
“You see it on the men’s side all the time and it’s completely normal,” Pugh said. “Some kids go over to Europe when they’re 15 years old and play with clubs over in Europe. I think women’s soccer in the U.S. is evolving.”
Pugh, who hails from Colorado, was busy last year with the U.S. women’s national team, first as the youngest woman on the Olympic team, and then on the Under-20…