Ashley Sanchez helps Spirit reach NWSL final with win over OL Reign

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Washington Spirit upset OL Reign, book spot in NWSL final originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

The Washington Spirit is heading to the NWSL Championship after beating the OL Reign 2-1 in the league semifinals. Ashley Sanchez's 68th-minute goal decided the game, punching the franchise's ticket to Louisville.

For the Spirit, the match didn't start on the right foot as they conceded a goal three minutes into the game to Eugénie Le Sommer. Washington had a tough hill to climb, being on the road and down early, but they didn't panic and let the situation get out of hand.

Nine minutes later, the Spirit responded with a goal from Trinity Rodman at the 12th-minute mark. So for over 50 minutes, it was a heavyweight between the second and third best teams in the NWSL as both sides looked for the second goal, then it came at the 68th minute. 

On a broken play following a corner kick set piece, Sanchez scored what would be the game-winning with a shot to the far post to make it 2-1, helping the Spirit clinch their spot in the final.

The Washington Post's Steven Goff pointed out that Spirit is unbeaten on the field in 10 straight matches, aside from two forfeits, and they'll hope to make it 11 as they gear up for the NWSL final.

Washington will play either Portland Thorns or Chicago Red Stars.