Hilarie Burton Talks Protecting Sophia Bush Amid Ashlyn Harris Dating Rumors | Ashlyn Harris, Hilarie Burton, Sophia Bush | Just Jared: Celebrity News and Gossip

Hilarie Burton will always have longtime friend Sophia Bush‘s back.

In a new interview, Hilarie, 41, talked about always protecting her One Tree Hill co-star following Sophia‘s divorce from Grant Hughes and amid rumors that she is now dating soccer star Ashlyn Harris.

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“She’s just not afraid to throw herself in front of the line of fire,” Hilarie shared with Entertainment Tonight. “She’s done it for me so many times and so, I want to protect her at all costs.”

She continued, “Everybody’s had an internet scuffle or two and Sophia is the first person that will rush in and that is why my husband loves her so much because he’s like, ‘You know, other than me — the person who comes to your defense and the person who will fight for your honor is Sophia,’ and so I love that she’s unafraid.”

“Sometimes with people who are so strong and unafraid, they hide their soft inside and so it’s my job as her best friend to protect her as well because she really is the most wonderful human and, yeah, we’ll still be working together when we’re in our eighties,” Hilarie added.

Earlier this week, it was reported that Sophia, 41, has been spending a lot of time with Ashlyn, 38, who is currently going through a divorce too. (Ashlyn filed for divorce from wife Ali Krieger last month.)

While she didn’t address the Sophia and Ashlyn dating rumors, Hilarie did say, “I think being able to celebrate every chapter of a loved one’s life is so important and that even means like the chapters that are awkward or the chapters that maybe didn’t work in the past.”

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Hilarie added, “We were together last night and being able to just be together and hold each other and be like, ‘Whatever is coming next, like, I’m here for it’ and that’s exciting ’cause she’s held me in some dark chapters and so, for her, I wanna celebrate the wins and I wanna again, like, protect her at all costs. That’s a good woman.”

If you missed it, Grant recently spoke out amid the Sophia and Ashlyn dating rumors.

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