TAMPA, Fla. – The USL Championship announced the Team of the Week for Week 30 of the 2023 regular season on Tuesday, with San Diego Loyal SC forward Ronaldo Damus voted the Championship Player of the Week presented by Konami eFootball after notching the second hat trick in SD Loyal history and his first in the USL Championship in the side’s 4-1 victory against Monterey Bay F.C. on Saturday night.
Named 2021 USL Championship Final MVP while at Orange County SC, Damus joined San Diego on loan from Swedish club GIF Sundsvall for the 2023 season and reached double-digit goals for the season with his first hat trick in the league as SD Loyal clinched its place in the postseason against Monterey Bay at Torero Stadium. The Haiti international had previously notched a pair of hat tricks for North Texas SC in USL League One, where in 2019 he helped the side claim the inaugural league title before joining OCSC. Damus and SD Loyal are now in third place in the Championship’s Western Conference entering Wednesday night’s clash with El Paso Locomotive FC, where they will try to gain ground on second-placed San Antonio FC with three games to go in the regular season.
Damus earned 46 percent of the ballot to claim the award. Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC’s Romario Williams finished second on 23 percent after recording three goals in two outings, including a pair of goals in the Switchbacks’ 3-0 midweek victory on the road against Detroit City FC that moved the side within range of earning its third consecutive trip to the playoffs.
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.
GK – Connor Sparrow, Tampa Bay Rowdies: The veteran shot-stopper recorded consecutive shutouts in Tampa Bay’s victories against Hartford Athletic and Loudoun United FC, making five saves as he reached 40 regular season clean sheets in the Championship’s regular season.
D – Aedan Stanley, Miami FC: Stanley recorded one assist and had six chances created overall in Miami’s 2-0 victory against Hartford Athletic while defensively he won 2 of 2 tackles and 4 of 4 duels and completed 38 of 49 passes overall.
D – Adrian Diz Pe, Indy Eleven: The Cuban veteran put in a stellar defensive display in his side’s 3-0 victory against Detroit City FC on Saturday, winning 5 of 5 tackles and 4 of 5 aerial duels while making five clearances, two interceptions and 10 recoveries as Indy secured its postseason return for the first time since 2019.
D – Conner Antley, Tampa Bay Rowdies: Antley played a key role defensively as the Rowdies recorded shutout wins against Hartford Athletic and Loudoun United FC, making 19 recoveries and five interceptions across two games while winning 9 of 12 duels and 4 of 6 tackles across 180 minutes.
M – Keko, Sacramento Republic FC: The Spanish midfielder scored the opening goal as part of a strong all-around display in Republic FC’s 2-0 victory against Las Vegas Lights FC on Sunday evening, completing 34 of 43 passes and 4 of 7 dribbles while winning 2 of 2 tackles and 8 of 13 duels and making eight recoveries defensively.
M – Florian Valot, Miami FC: Valot recorded a goal and assist to lead Miami to a 2-0 victory against Hartford Athletic, moving the side above the playoff line in the Eastern Conference, and completed 23 of 31 passes while recording two interceptions and five recoveries.
M – Eric Calvillo, El Paso Locomotive FC: The El Salvador international recorded the game-winning goal and an assist in Locomotive FC’s comeback 3-2 victory against the Charleston Battery on Saturday, while also completing 42 of 51 passes and notching three chances created.
M – Joe Corona, San Diego Loyal SC: The former United States international had one assist and completed 33 of 40 passes and 2 of 2 dribbles overall while making nine recoveries and winning 2 of 2 tackles defensively in his side’s 4-1 victory against Monterey Bay F.C.
F – Romario Williams, Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC: The Jamaican international scored three goals across two appearances, recording four shots on target overall and two chances created, as the Switchbacks claimed four points to close in on a postseason berth.
F – Ronaldo Damus, San Diego Loyal SC: Damus recorded the second hat trick in SD Loyal history to lead the side to a 4-1 victory against Monterey Bay F.C. that clinched a place in the postseason, and ended the game with six shots overall and two chances created.
F – Albert Dikwa, Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC: The Golden Boot leader recorded a pair of goals in the Hounds’ 3-2 victory against FC Tulsa, recording three shots and one chances created and completing 14 of 19 passes as Pittsburgh remained on top of the Eastern Conference.
Bench: Andy Thomas (NM), Dani Rovíra (PIT), Cam Lindley (IND), Taylor Davila (RGV), Memo Diaz (OAK), Neco Brett (BHM), Joaquin Rivas (MIA)
Tag(s): News Team of the Week CO Spring Switchbacks Rio Grande Valley FC Sacramento Republic FC Pittsburgh Riverhounds Tampa Bay Rowdies Aedan Stanley Florian Valot Neco Brett Joe Corona Connor Sparrow Joaquin Rivas Romario Williams Birmingham Legion FC Indy Eleven El Paso Locomotive FC Taylor Davila Eric Calvillo Adrián Diz Cameron Lindley New Mexico United Guillermo Diaz Daniel Rovira San Diego Loyal SC Miami FC Conner Antley Oakland Roots SC Ronaldo Damus Keko Gontan