TAMPA, Fla. – USL League One today announced the Team of the Week for Week 22 of the 2022 regular season with Richmond Kickers midfielder Jonathan Bolanos named Player of the Week for the second time this season. Picking up a goal and two assists in Richmond’s victory over Omaha, Bolanos helped lead the Kickers back to the top of the table.
“I think having that aggressiveness helped in my approach tonight,” Bolanos mentioned. “That mentality of going forward every time I have the ball, to beat my defender and create a chance for the team. It's what I have been trying to do every game coming back from that second injury. That's been the mentality ever since I came back and to continue producing on the stats sheet."
In the first match in which he recorded both a goal and assist, Bolanos got started early as he raced down the pitch in the 20th minute and stabbed the ball into the middle of the box. Moments later, Bolanos gathered the rebounded ball and tapped it home for the opening score. Bolanos wrapped up the big Kickers win with a pair of assists dished out to Emiliano Terzaghi in the 70th and 75th minute which the Argentine attacker easily converted.
"We wanted to play soccer tonight, we wanted to play through the lines, and we proved that we could do that against a very good team that's won a championship,” Kickers Chief Sporting Officer and Head Coach Darren Sawatzky said. “We're going to build on that complete game and move on to the next because in this league anything can happen.
"I told the guys to enjoy the win, they deserve it. But this is only the beginning, not the end. We’ve been working very hard to put a complete game together and this is the closest we've been to that. This is just the start of things. We have at least seven games left to take care of and hopefully more to go.”
The Richmond Kickers fittingly place three players on the Team of the Week after downing Union Omaha 3-0 and ending the Owls’ record-breaking 11-match unbeaten streak. South Georgia Tormenta FC and Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC place two on the Team of the Week following an impressive 2-0 victory, respectively. North Carolina FC, Chattanooga Red Wolves SC, the Charlotte Independence and FC Tucson round out the list with one player each.
GK – Will Pulisic, North Carolina FC: Across a pair of Week 22 draws, Pulisic racked up eight saves and conceded just one goal in the process. Pulisic led the league with 20 recoveries to earn a clean sheet and two points on the week.
D – Jalen Crisler, Richmond Kickers: Crisler anchored the Richmond backline in his side’s 3-0 shutout victory over Omaha. The 28-year-old defender recorded eight recoveries and seven clearances to go along with 11 of 10 duels won.
D – Owen Damm, Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC: The 19-year-old LouCity loanee tallied his first professional assist in the Hailstorm’s impressive shutout win over Greenville. Additionally, Damm recorded seven clearances, five recoveries and won 9 of 16 duels.
D – Jake Dengler, South Georgia Tormenta FC: Dengler led all players with 12 clearances in Week 22 as he helped his side to a 2-0 victory over Fuego FC. Dengler also tallied eight recoveries and won 6 of 9 duels.
D – Arthur Rogers, Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC: The productive defender helped Northern Colorado to an impressive road victory over Greenville with a pair of chances created to go along with six clearances, five interceptions and five recoveries.
M – Jonathan Bolanos, Richmond Kickers: Now leading the league in assists with nine, Bolanos picked up a pair of helpers along with a goal in Richmond’s 3-0 thumping of Omaha. Bolanos’ five chances created also led all players in Week 22.
M – Moe Espinoza, Chattanooga Red Wolves SC: Now with the second-most assists in the league, Espinoza picked up a goal and an assist in the Red Wolves’ 2-2 draw in Charlotte. The 23-year-old winger was precise, completing 89% of his passes, 100% of his long balls and placing 2 of 3 shots on frame.
M – Miguel Ibarra, Charlotte Independence: Ibarra notched the 35th professional goal of his impressive 11-year career on Saturday. In addition to a trio of chances created, Ibarra completed 90% of his passes, 88% of his long balls and won 100% of his duels.
M – Louis Perez, FC Tucson: Perez scored his third goal in as many matches as FC Tucson played NCFC to a 1-1 draw. The Frenchman completed 89% of his passes and was perfect on his combined eight crosses and long balls.
F – Kazaiah Sterling, South Georgia Tormenta FC: Sterling recorded his third brace of the season in Tormenta FC’s 2-0 victory over Fuego FC. His three braces are tied with Richmond’s Emiliano Terzaghi for the league lead this season.
F – Emiliano Terzaghi, Richmond Kickers: The league’s all-time leader in braces picked up his eighth on Saturday as the Kickers downed a red-hot Omaha side. His three braces this season are tied with South Georgia’s Kazaiah Sterling for the league lead.