The USL Championship announced the Team of the Week for Week 28 of the 2023 regular season today, with Phoenix Rising FC defender Mo Traore and forwards Manuel Arteaga and Danny Trejo being named to the squad for their performances in the team’s 5-0 win vs. Detroit on September 16.
It was the second consecutive nomination for Traore, who won six of seven duels, made 12 recoveries and completed 49 of his 61 passes. Arteaga set up the first goal of the night, scored by Trejo in first half stoppage time. He also found the back of the net in the second half on a pass from Eddie Munjoma. Trejo scored twice in the game to move atop the Golden Boot standings. He also created one chance and completed 86% of his passes.
Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC goalkeeper Christian Herrera was voted the Championship Player of the Week presented by Konami eFootball after recording an eight-save shutout in his side’s 1-0 victory against Orange County SC last Friday night at Championship Soccer Stadium.
Currently in his second season in Colorado Springs, Herrera has stepped into the starting lineup consistently this season and has already logged individual single-season highs in shutouts (7), saves (72) and a career-best save percentage of 73.5 percent. The 26-year-old equaled his single-game high for saves this season against Orange County SC, having also posted an eight-save shutout in the Switchbacks’ 2-0 victory against Las Vegas Lights FC on June 17. Herrera’s impressive performance against an OCSC side that was undefeated in its prior nine games proved key as Jamaican international Tyreek Magee struck late to give the visitors a vital three points in their pursuit of the playoffs.
Herrera earned 67 percent of the ballot to claim the award. Phoenix Rising FC’s Manuel Arteaga finished second on 27 percent after recording a goal and assist as part of an emphatic 5-0 victory against Detroit City FC on Saturday night that moved Rising FC into the top four in the Western Conference standings.
The Championship’s Player of the Week is selected by the USL National Media Panel, which is made up of representatives from each media market in the Championship.
USL Championship Team of the Week – Week 28
GK – Christian Herrera, Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC: Herrera recorded an eight-save shutout and caught three crosses to help the Switchbacks to a 1-0 victory on the road against Orange County SC on Friday night that ended OCSC’s nine-game undefeated run.
D – Aidan McFadden, Memphis 901 FC: McFadden recorded two assists and had three shots and three chances created overall to help guide Memphis to a 4-2 comeback victory against Hartford Athletic on Saturday night while also making 11 recoveries defensively.
D – Walmer Martínez, Monterey Bay F.C.: The El Salvador international notched a pair of assists as he helped power Monterey Bay to its first victory after trailing by two goals in club history, notching four chances created and completing 3 of 3 crosses in a 3-2 win against Las Vegas Lights FC.
D – Mohamed Traore, Phoenix Rising FC: The 21-year-old continued an impressive run of recent form as he completed 49 of 61 passes, won 6 of 7 duels and 2 of 3 aerial duels, and made 12 recoveries and two interceptions in Phoenix’s 5-0 victory against Detroit City FC.
M – Kalil ElMedkhar, Loudoun United FC: ElMedkhar recorded a goal and assist and had three shots and two chances created while winning 2 of 2 tackles and 9 of 13 duels defensively in his side’s 2-2 draw with the Charleston Battery.
M – Nathan Fogaça, San Antonio FC: The Brazilian recorded a goal and assist in SAFC’s 3-3 draw with the Tampa Bay Rowdies as he recorded three shots and three chances created while winning 2 of 2 tackles defensively.
M – Danny Griffin, Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC: Griffin was dynamic in midfield as the Hounds earned a 2-1 win against Miami FC, recording one assist and completing 64 of 70 passes and 6 of 6 long passes while notching 12 recoveries and two interceptions defensively.
M – Nicky Hernandez, New Mexico United: Hernandez recorded a goal and assist as New Mexico United restored some hope of reaching the playoffs with a 3-2 victory at home to Indy Eleven, while also completing 19 of 24 passes and recording four shots and three chances created overall.
F – Manuel Arteaga, Phoenix Rising FC: Arteaga recorded a goal and assist in his side’s 5-0 win against Detroit City FC, recording five shots and three chances created overall, and also did work defensively, winning 4 of 5 duels, 5 of 8 aerial duels and 2 of 2 tackles.
F – Prince Saydee, Hartford Athletic: The Liberian winger shone in a losing effort, scoring both of Hartford Athletic’s goals in its 4-2 defeat to Memphis 901 FC while recording four shots on target out of five overall.
F – Charlie Dennis, Tampa Bay Rowdies: Dennis earned and then converted a penalty kick, recorded two chances created and completed 33 of 41 passes while defensively winning 2 of 3 tackles and 8 of 13 duels and recording 11 recoveries in his side’s 3-3 draw against San Antonio FC.
Bench: Benny Díaz (ELP), Emrah Klimenta (OAK), Erik McCue (ELP), Chris Hegardt (LDN), Luiz Fernando (MEM), Danny Trejo (PHX), JJ Williams (TBR)