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Maria Sanchez

Dash re-sign Mexican captain Maria Sanchez

Maria Sanchez leds Dash and El Tri

Mexican women’s national team captain Maria Sanchez has re-signed with the Houston Dash, keeping one of the anchors of the NWSL squad in the Bayou City.

Sanchez, who was born and raised in Idaho, was the first Mexican American star for the Dash. The veteran forward entered the offseason as a restricted free agent, but there was no doubt that the Dash wanted to re-sign her.

Maria Sanchez, 27, signed a three-year contract with a mutual option for the 2027 season. 

“We are excited to share the signing of Maria Sanchez, a pivotal player and person on-and-off the pitch,” Dash general manager Alex Singer said. “Maria is a difference maker who embodies our club’s ambition. Her world-class left foot and attacking  abilities, her desire to be a champion in Houston, and authentic connection to our community are what makes her a leader.”

Maria Sanchez led attack

Sanchez was one of the few bright spots this year for the Dash, which finished tied for 10th in the 12-team NWSL. Only the Chicago Red Stars had fewer points than the Dash in the NWSL this season.

Although Mexico failed to qualify for the Women’s World Cup and the upcoming Olympics, Sanchez helped El Tri Femenil win a gold medal at the 2023 Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile, in November.

She scored a Pan American Games-best four goals for Mexico, tying for the Golden Boot that goes to the leading score.

Sanchez led the Dash with four goals in 2023. She also had six assists. In 2022, she scored three goals and had seven assists combined in all competitions for the Dash.

“Securing Maria’s long-term future was a priority as we know she will play an important role for the Dash for years to come,” Singer said. “Signing Maria to this robust, new deal signifies our commitment to investing talent on the pitch and infrastructure to ensure their success.”

Sanchez was one of only three Dash players to appear in all 22 regular season games in 2023, starting all but one her appearances. She played 1,742 minutes in the regular season, playing the full 90 minutes in 10 of her 21 appearances.

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“Houston, I am so excited to be coming back,” she said in a statement. “I am so privileged to represent such an amazing city and group of fans,” Sánchez said. “Words can’t describe the gratitude I have for the endless support I have received while representing the Dash. I can’t wait to get back to work and reach new levels of success for the club.” 

Sánchez, a steady contributor for the Mexican women’s national team, joined the Dash after two seasons in Mexico’s Liga Femenil. She made an impact almost immediately, helping the club make the NWSL playoffs for the first time.

On the international level, she has earned 64 caps for Mexico since making her debut with El Tri in 2015.

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