Birmingham Legion FC's Neco Brett became the fourth player to reach 75 regular season goals in the USL Championship's history on Saturday evening. | Photo courtesy Birmingham Legion FC
Conventional soccer wisdom says if you’re scoring a goal every other game as a forward, you’re getting the work done in impressive fashion.
After the latest landmark in his outstanding career in the USL Championship, in this week’s edition of News & Notes we look at where Birmingham Legion FC’s Neco Brett stacks up among the league’s all-time great strikers.
In addition to that, we’ve also got notes on two teams going in opposite directions currently in Orange County SC and El Paso Locomotive FC, the club first that Joaquin Rivas achieved for Miami FC, and much more.
There’s also your regular look at upcoming milestones for players across the league, and the Week 25 Discipline Report.
Let’s dig in.
LEGION FC’S NECO BRETT SCORES 75TH REGULAR SEASON GOAL
Birmingham Legion FC’s Neco Brett became just the fourth player in the USL Championship’s history to record 75 regular season goals, reaching the landmark in his 189th regular season game on Saturday in his side’s 2-0 victory against Louisville City FC.
Brett broke a tie with former Championship standout Corey Hertzog, who now sits alone in fifth place in the league’s all-time list. The Jamaican has averaged a goal every 176.7 minutes since making his debut for the Portland Timbers 2 in 2017, a mark that puts him seventh in strike rate among players with at least 50 goals in the Championship’s regular season.
USL Championship Regular Season Mins/Goal Leaders (Min. 50 goals)
1. Cameron Lancaster – 79 goals, 114.95 mins/goal*
2. Dane Kelly – 106 goals, 150.32 mins/goal
3. Chandler Hoffman – 66 goals, 156.21 mins/goal
4. Hadji Barry – 79 goals, 157.68 mins/goal
5. Jose Angulo – 53 goals, 167.21 mins/goal
6. Junior Flemmings – 57 goals, 171.04 mins/goal
7. Neco Brett – 75 goals, 176.65 mins/goal*
8. Sebastian Guenzatti – 66 goals, 186.33 mins/goal*
9. Kyle Murphy – 60 goals, 197.62 mins/goal*
10. Chris Cortez – 51 goals, 197.94 mins/goal
* - Active Players
ORANGE COUNTY SC’S WINNING STREAK REACHES SIX GAMES
Orange County SC recorded its sixth consecutive victory on Saturday night in a 2-0 win against the Charleston Battery. In doing so, it equaled a club record for the Championship’s regular season and moved within one of matching the longest winning streak in the league this year.
OCSC previously recorded a six-game winning streak between August 17 and September 21 during the 2019 season, during which it scored 13 goals and conceded only twice, posting four shutouts. In the club’s current streak, it has recorded 14 goals and conceded five, posting three shutouts.
Longest Regular Season Winning Streaks in USL Championship History
1. Phoenix Rising FC – 20 games, 2019
2. FC Cincinnati – 10 games, 2018
T-3. Real Monarchs SLC – 9 games, 2017
T-3. Tampa Bay Rowdies – 9 games, 2021
5. Orlando City SC – 8 games, 2014
T-6. El Paso Locomotive FC – 7 games, 2023
T-6. Tampa Bay Rowdies – 7 games, 2022
T-6. Swope Park Rangers – 7 games, 2017
T-6. Swope Park Rangers – 7 games, 2016-17
T-6. New York Red Bulls II – 7 games, 2016
LOCOMOTIVE FC WINLESS RUN REACHES DOUBLE-DIGITS
El Paso Locomotive FC’s winless streak reached 10 games on Saturday night after a 3-2 defeat to Indy Eleven at Southwest University Park. The mark leaves Locomotive FC with the dubious distinction of becoming the first team in the USL Championship’s history that has recorded both a double-digit undefeated streak and winless streak in the same season.
El Paso went 12 games undefeated between a 3-0 victory against Louisville City FC on March 25 and a 1-1 draw against the Tampa Bay Rowdies on June 17. That draw served as the inflection point for its current winless run, which stands as the longest in the club’s history.
- Birmingham Legion FC goalkeeper Matt VanOekel became the fourth-eldest player to record a regular season shutout in his side’s 2-0 victory against Louisville City FC on Saturday, aged 36 years, 10 months, 30 days old. He had previously held the No. 5 position in the all-time list, and surpassed former Sacramento Republic FC goalkeeper Dominik Jakubek, whose last shutout in the league came aged 36 years, 9 months, 7 days old.
- Joaquin Rivas’ hat trick for Miami FC against Hartford Athletic was the first of the El Salvador international’s career. It also marked the first hat trick recorded by a Miami FC player since the club joined the USL Championship for the 2020 season.
- San Diego Loyal SC and New Mexico United played to a fifth consecutive draw in their regular season series on Saturday night, with neither side yet to claim the upper hand on the other in their respective histories. This marked the second time this season a streak of that kind has occurred, with FC Tulsa and Las Vegas Lights FC having played five drawn contests in their series since its inception in 2018.
- Sacramento Republic FC and Orange County SC will meet for the 25th time in the USL Championship’s regular season on Saturday night. It will be the sixth series in league history to have played 25 editions, with Sacramento holding a narrow 10-9-5 lead in victories.
2022 USL Championship Defender of the Year Mitchell Taintor could make his 200th regular season appearance when San Antonio FC hosts Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC on Saturday night. | Photo courtesy Darren Abate / San Antonio FC
Approaching 250 regular-season appearances
Aodhan Quinn (IND) – 248
Paolo DelPiccolo (LOU) – 247
Approaching 200 regular-season appearances
Mitchell Taintor (SA) – 199
Kyle Murphy (MIA) – 199
Tarek Morad (OAK) – 198
Approaching 150 regular-season appearances
Chris Wehan (NM) – 148
Mark Segbers (MIA) – 148
Jose Hernandez (PHX) – 148
Approaching 100 regular-season appearances
Yuma (ELP) – 99
Eric Calvillo (ELP) – 99
Jared Timmer (SAC) – 98
Florian Valot (MIA) – 98
Amando Moreno (NM) – 98
Christian Sorto (MIA) – 98
Fabien Garcia (SA) – 98
Approaching 15,000 regular season minutes
Brian Ownby (LOU) – 14,974
Joe Farrell (PIT) – 14,911
Antoine Hoppenot (HFD) – 14,650
Approaching 10,000 regular season minutes
Will Seymore (NM) – 9,997
Leland Archer (CHS) – 9,911
Adrian Diz Pe (IND) – 9,898
Tyler Pasher (BHM) – 9,875
Cam Lindley (IND) – 9,775
Approaching 50 regular season goals
Romario Williams (COS) – 49
Lucky Mkosana (TBR) – 48
Approaching 30 regular season assists
Charlie Adams (SD) – 28
Niall McCabe (LOU) – 27
Rodrigo Da Costa (MEM) – 27
Approaching 250 regular season saves
Paul Blanchette (OAK) – 248
Approaching 200 regular season saves
Tyler Deric (RGV) – 190
Jake McGuire (MIA) – 188
Kyle Morton (LOU) – 187
Approaching 40 regular-season shutouts
Connor Sparrow (TBR) – 37
Approaching 30 regular-season shutouts
Joe Kuzminsky (COS) – 29
Danny Vitiello (SAC) – 29
Jordan Farr (SA) – 29
TAMPA, Fla. – The following is the USL Championship’s discipline report for Week 25 of the 2023 USL Championship season:
Rio Grande Valley FC’s Juan David Cabezas has been suspended for one game following his red card for two cautionable offenses against Phoenix Rising FC on August 19. Cabezas will be unavailable for selection in Rio Grande Valley’s contest against San Diego Loyal SC on Saturday night.
San Antonio FC’s Jorge Hernandez has been suspended for one game following his red card for two cautionable offenses against Monterey Bay F.C. on August 19. Hernandez will be unavailable for selection in San Antonio’s contest against Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC on Saturday night.
Birmingham Legion FC’s Alex Crognale has been suspended for one game for caution accumulation after receiving his eighth yellow card of the season against Louisville City FC on August 19. Crognale will be unavailable for selection in Birmingham’s contest against FC Tulsa on Wednesday night.
El Paso Locomotive FC’s Eric Calvillo has been suspended for one game for caution accumulation after receiving his eighth yellow card of the season against Indy Eleven on August 19. Calvillo will be unavailable for selection in El Paso’s contest against Hartford Athletic on Saturday night.
Orange County SC’s Milan Iloski has been suspended for one game for caution accumulation after receiving his eighth yellow card of the season against the Charleston Battery on August 19. Iloski will be unavailable for selection in Orange County’s contest against Sacramento Republic FC on Saturday night.
Rio Grande Valley FC’s Taylor Davila is no longer on caution accumulation warning having had one caution removed under the USL’s Good Behavior incentive to place him on six cautions for the season.
FC Tulsa’s Milo Yosef is no longer on caution accumulation warning having had one caution removed under the USL’s Good Behavior incentive to place him on six cautions for the season.
The following players enter the upcoming matches one caution away from a one-game yellow card accumulation suspension for their eighth yellow card of the season. Here is the breakdown per club:
Birmingham Legion FC (1) – Anderson Asiedu
El Paso Locomotive FC (1) – Eder Borelli
Hartford Athletic (1) – Antoine Hoppenot
Indy Eleven (2) – Younes Boudadi, Callum Chapman-Page
Las Vegas Lights FC (3) – Jacob Bushue, Andres Jimenez, Isidro Sanchez
San Antonio FC (1) – Mitchell Taintor
San Diego Loyal SC (1) – Collin Martin
The following players enter the upcoming matches one caution away from a two-game yellow card accumulation suspension for their 11th yellow card of the season. Here is the breakdown per club:
Loudoun United FC (1): Houssou Landry
Sacramento Republic FC (1): Arnold Lopez
San Antonio FC (1): Lamar Batista
Tag(s): Features San Antonio FC CO Spring Switchbacks Orange County SC Phoenix Rising FC Rio Grande Valley FC Sacramento Republic FC FC Tulsa Charleston Battery Louisville City FC Pittsburgh Riverhounds Tampa Bay Rowdies Las Vegas Lights FC Birmingham Legion FC Indy Eleven Memphis 901 FC El Paso Locomotive FC New Mexico United Loudoun United FC Hartford Athletic San Diego Loyal SC Miami FC Oakland Roots SC Detroit City FC Monterey Bay F.C.