Saturday, June 9

Lower Division Five Stars - Round 9... plus US Open Cup Rd 4

A little late, but here is the Five Stars for the lower division campaign through games of June 3 along with the fourth installment of the US Open Cup rankings. in the Lower Division rankings, it started out as a strikers' league, but has definitely transitioned into being all about the goalkeepers. In the Open Cup, the all-tournament list saw little change as the MLS teams are yet to have any consistent goal scorers to move up a list featuring a lot of great early round performances. 

Five Stars of the Week – Round 9

1 – Corey Hertzog – F – Wilmington Hammerheads: A fantastic performance with two goals and an assist gave the Hammers a 3-1 win over the previously unbeaten league leader Orlando City.  

2 – Ronnie Pascale – G – Richmond Kickers: One goal allowed and 19 saves in a pair of positive road results, a 1-1 draw in Harrisburg and a 1-0 win at Rochester.

3 – Ciaran O’Brien – M – Atlanta Silverbacks: A goal and an assist helped the club get its first win of the season, downing FC Edmonton 2-1.

4 – Andrew Dykstra – G – Charleston Battery: Gave up only one goal and had eight saves in a pair of road wins, topping Pittsburgh 3-1 and Dayton 1-0.

5 – Nicki Paterson – F – Charleston Battery: Pair of goals in a 3-1 win at Pittsburgh.

Five Stars for the Season

First Five:

1 – Darryl Sattler – G – San Antonio Scorpions: After a rare two-goal outing in the last game, Sattler rebounded by posting a shutout in a scoreless draw against the unbeaten Minnesota Stars. Previous: 5

2 – Kristian Nicht – G – Rochester Rhinos:
He is still performing really well, only giving up one goal in a loss to Richmond, but he drops primarily because his team can’t find the net themselves and are winless in the last five games.  Previous: 1

3 – Shaun Saiko – F – FC Edmonton: A light week for the other half of the Five Stars list allows Saiko to stay in the top five with an assist in a 2-1 loss to Atlanta as team’s are beginning to focus on him. Previous: 3

4 – Andrew Dykstra – G – Charleston Battery: Dykstra’s numbers continue to impress, though this week’s two outings on the road came against weaker opposition. Previous: 4

5 – Walter Restrepo – M – Fort Lauderdale Strikers: The drought from Amani Walker for Minnesota dropped him out of the top five, allowing Restrepo to move up with a goal in the club’s 3-1 win over Tampa Bay. Previous: 6

The Next Five: 6 Amani Walker (F, Minnesota), 7 Jose Cuevas (M, Charleston), 8 Nicki Paterson (F, Charleston), 9 Mark Anderson (F, Fort Lauderdale), 10 Ciaran O’Brien (M, Atlanta)

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8

About Five Stars:
WEEK: The top five professional lower division performers in the North American Soccer League and USL Pro.
SEASON: The top five professional lower division performers cumulatively for the year in the NASL and USL Pro. The list is updated weekly.

BONUS: Five Stars of the US Open Cup

Fourth Round

1 – Sainey Touray – Harrisburg City Islanders (USL Pro) – An easy choice. He scored two goals against his former club, knocking the New York Red Bulls out 3-1 in overtime. 

2 – Osvaldo Alonso – Seattle Sounders (MLS) He scored two goals in an easy 5-0 win against amateur Cal FC, and although one was a penalty, the other was the talk of the round.

3 – Gibson Bardsley – Dayton Dutch Lions (USL Pro) – The striker continued the stunning run for the club, winless in league play, with an early goal that put Dayton in the driver’s seat on the road in a 2-1 win at Michigan

4 – Antoine Hoopenot – Philadelphia Union (MLS) – Came off the bench and gave Philly a spark in a 2-1 extra time win at DC United (Maryland Soccerplex). He nearly scored the game-winnerin regulation, but eventually scored it in the 95th minute of OT.

5 – Fredy Montero – Seattle Sounders (MLS)
– Montero was a constant threat for Seattle against the amateur Cal FC. He scored twice in ten minutes to put the match well out of reach for the underdogs.


1 – Danny Barrera – Cal FC (USASA) – Two goals in the opening game upset on the road against defending PDL champion Kitsap and two more in another road upset on the opposite coast in a stunning 4-0 win over USL Pro Wilmington. He made a fantastic assist on the winning goal in the 1-0 upset win over Portland in the Third Round.

2 – Brian Shriver – Carolina RailHawks (NASL) – Four goals against a weak opponent put him in a tie for the tournament lead in scoring in the Second Round. He added a fifth to claim that lead alone as the division two side upset the reigning MLS Cup champion LA Galaxy, 2-1, in the Third Round. 

3 – Artur Aghasyan – Cal FC (USASA) – The Armenian striker scored in each of the first three Open Cup contests, including the shocking overtime game-winner against the Portland Timbers for the 1-0 win.

4 – Daniel Holowaty – Dayton Dutch Lions (USL Pro) – The striker had seen only 84 minutes for the winless USL Pro side, but has been Mr. Clutch in the Open Cup. In the Second Round he scored in stoppage time, moments after the PDL Chicago Fire had equalized, to give Dayton a 2-1 victory. In the Third Round he set up two goals in three minutes to rally the Dutch Lions past Columbus Crew in a state derby.

5 – Nate Thornton – Charlotte Eagles (USL Pro) – He notched a goal and an assist in the club’s stunning 2-0 win at FC Dallas, and added another goal to the tally with the opening goal in a 2-1 overtime road win versus the San Antonio Scorpions.

The Next Five: 6 Brian Kallman (Minnesota Stars) 7 Ty Shipalane (Carolina RailHawks), 8 Soony Saad (Sporting KC), 9 Francisco Lopez (Ventura County Fusion), 10 Sainey Touray (Harrisburg City Islanders)

First Round | Second Round | Third Round

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