TAMPA, Fla. – USL PRO named its Team of the Week for Week 22 of the 2014 season on Tuesday as Charleston Battery midfielder Jose Cuevas was named Player of the Week. Cuevas had two goals and added two assists as the Battery defeated both Orange County Blues FC and the Rochester Rhinos to move up to sixth place in the USL PRO standings last week.
The Battery opened Week 22 in ninth place, but behind an outstanding performance by Cuevas jumped past eighth-placed Orange County with a 3-2 victory. Cuevas provided the assists on both of fellow Team of the Week selection Dane Kelly’s goals, and also converted from the penalty spot to lead the Battery to victory. The 2012 USL PRO Rookie of the Year also struck from the penalty spot for what proved to be the game-winning goal in Charleston’s 2-1 win against Rochester on Saturday, as the Battery moved ahead of the Rhinos into sixth.
Another pair of teams had two players selected to the Team of the Week, with Orlando City SC’s midfield duo of Darwin Ceren and Kevin Molino both being named. Ceren had a pair of goals as the Lions defeated Harrisburg, while Molino’s finish in the 3-1 win moved him level with former Lion Dom Dwyer and Pittsburgh’s Jose Angulo for the single-season USL PRO goal-scoring record with 15 this season.
Arizona United SC also had a strong week, led by forward Jonathan Top and goalkeeper Evan Newton. Top scored in both of United’s victories, which moved the side within two points of the top eight, while Newton put in an outstanding eight-save performance to lead his side to a 2-1 win against OKC Energy FC on Thursday night.
Others selected included Sacramento Republic FC forward Tommy Stewart, who came off the bench to score the final three goals in his side’s 6-1 win against Orange County on Sunday, while Richmond’s George Davis IV scored on an outstanding free kick in the Kickers’ 1-1 draw with Dayton.
The Dutch Lions’ Shintaro Harada led the defensive group, as his goal earned Dayton a point in Richmond. He was joined by the LA Galaxy II’s Daniel Steres, who had the only goal in Los Dos’ 1-0 win against OKC, while Ben Newnam had a strong performance that was capped by an assist on Zak Boggs’ opening goal in a 3-1 win against Rochester.
The USL PRO season continues on Wednesday night as the Charlotte Eagles host Orlando City SC and Wilmington Hammerheads FC visits Sacramento Republic FC. Friday night brings a key clash in the race for the USL PRO Playoffs as Arizona United hosts OKC Energy FC, and then Saturday sees the top two teams in the league meet as the Richmond Kickers host Orlando City SC at City Stadium.
Every game of the 2014 USL PRO season can be seen live on YouTube, with live updates also available via Twitter (@USLPRO), Facebook and Google+. Stay up to date with news, previews and match reports from throughout the league via USLPROSoccer.com.
USL PRO Team of the Week
|GK||Evan Newton||Arizona||Eight-save performance led United to victory against OKC|
|D||Shintaro Harada||Dayton||Fine free kick earned Dutch Lions a point in Richmond|
|D||Daniel Steres||LA Galaxy II||Had only goal as Los Dos took victory in Oklahoma City|
|D||Ben Newnam||Charlotte||Excellent two-way performance, and provided assist on game-winner|
|M||Darwin Ceren||Orlando||Scored twice, and connected the Lions’ midfield well throughout|
|M||Jose Cuevas||Charleston||Had two goals, two assists as Battery claimed two wins|
|M||George Davis IV||Richmond||Blistering free kick put Kickers ahead against Dutch Lions|
|M||Kevin Molino||Orlando||Tied league’s single-season goal-scoring record against Harrisburg|
|F||Dane Kelly||Charleston||Scored twice as Battery took crucial victory against Blues|
|F||Jonathan Top||Arizona||Scored twice in two games as United remained alive in playoffs|
|F||Thomas Stewart||Sacramento||Came on as substitute and had hat trick as Republic FC downed Blues|
Honorable Mention – Arizona: Sam Garza, Tyler Ruthven; Charleston: Colin Falvey, Justin Portillo; Charlotte: Zak Boggs, Jorge Herrera; Dayton: Matt Williams, Joe Broekhuizen; Harrisburg: Robbie Derschang, Leo Fernandes; LA Galaxy II: Bradford Jamieson IV, Oscar Sorto; Oklahoma City: Adda Djeziri, Dan Delgado; Orange County: Alex Martinez, Ju Seung Kim; Orlando: Luke Boden, Adama Mbengue; Pittsburgh: Mackenzie Pridham, Robert Vincent; Richmond: Matt Delicate, Shay Spitz; Rochester: Onua Obasi, JC Banks; Sacramento: Adam Jahn, Max Alvarez; Wilmington: Marc Godelman.