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Top 2018 Moments – Alvarez’s Historic Hat Trick

By NICHOLAS MURRAY - nicholas.murray@uslsoccer.com, 12/26/18, 8:30AM EST

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Prodigious talent struck three times against Saint Louis aged just 15 years old

When he signed his first professional contract with the LA Galaxy II in August 2017, Efrain Alvarez made history as the youngest signing in the USL Championship’s history at 15 years, one month and 14 days old.

But while much is made of the age players are now joining the professional ranks, Alvarez’s accomplishment on May 9, 2018 was a far greater indicator of the promise he possesses for club and country. Becoming the youngest player to score a hat trick in the league’s history in a 6-3 victory against Saint Louis FC, the Mexico U-17 international’s landmark moment set the stage for a remarkable first full professional season.

Los Dos’ victory was historic for other reasons than just Alvarez’s hat trick, too. Alongside him, fellow Galaxy II forward Ethan Zubak also struck three times for the hosts as the duo became the first teammates to record hat tricks in the same game in the league’s history. By the end of the year, Alvarez and Zubak were sitting No. 1 and No. 2 in the USL Championship’s 20 Under 20 ranking, indicative of the pedigree both showed in reaching double-digit goals over the campaign.

Alvarez, meanwhile, claimed the USL Championship’s Young Player of the Year award as his scoring rate of a goal every 103.25 minutes sat second in the league to Golden-Boot winner Cameron Lancaster among double-digit goalscorers in the league.

The upcoming year is set to be a big one for Alvarez, with the chance to make his MLS debut and the prospect of the 2019 FIFA U-17 World Cup ahead. After his first spotlight moment for Los Dos last May, though, it’s one the prodigiously talented playmaker appears ready to embrace.

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