Scott Vallow's 13th and 14th shutouts of the season earned him a spot on this week's USL 1st Division Team of the Week. Vallow ended the regular season leading the league in games played, minutes played, saves, wins, and shutouts, and he was third in the league in goals against average trailing only the goalkeeping duo of Greg Sutton and Andrew Weber from Montreal.
Rey Martinez may not have gotten on the scoresheet this past weekend, but he was moving and grooving both off the bench on Friday versus Minnesota and in a starting role in Charleston on Saturday.
Rhinos to get a little rest
Coach Calloway is giving most of the team three days off after their back to back games last weekend. The whole team was off yesterday and will be off again today. Tomorrow, the players that didn't make the trip to Charleston will practice and then Thursday the whole squad will be working out.
The Rhinos will also be traveling to Harrisburg this weekend to take on the City Islanders of the USL 2nd Division in an attempt to ward off any potential rust from having the week off.
USL 1st Division 1st and 2nd Teams to be announced tomorrow
Greg Sutton was named the USL 1st Division Goalkeeper of the Year merely because it is a statistical award given out to the goalkeeper with the lowest goals against average. So, you can probably pencil him in as the 1st Team goalkeeper.
But, if Scott Vallow is left off the USL 1st Division 2nd team for a second year in a row, it will be a travesty. Vallow was the only goalkeeper in the league to play every minute of every game this season. Add in the high level of play and it should be a no-brainer.
The next question is how many other Rhinos will make the first or second team. The Rhinos stellar defensive trio of Frankie Sanfilippo, Scott Palguta, and Kenney Bertz should all get some consideration as the Rhinos were second in the league defensively behind Montreal.
Up top and in the midfield is where it will get murkier as the Rhinos were tied for sixth in the league offensively and the team's leading scorer, Matthew Delicate, was tied for 9th in league scoring with plenty of high scoring forwards ahead of him for all-league honors.
Perhaps the versatile Greg Howes might get some consideration given his play in the defensive midfield and up top for the Rhinos. And All-Star John Ball might get some play as well.
It will be interesting to see how it all plays out tomorrow.
Eddie Johnson could have been the first American to play in La Liga
Apparently you can add Eddie Johnson's name to the list of MLS players who were close to moving to Europe before the transfer window closed. MLS was in talks with Spanish club Real Sociedad for a loan with an option to buy that would have made KC Wizards forward Eddie Johnson the first American to play in La Liga, the Spanish First Division.
MLS only started the talks about a potential Johnson move after the Josh Wolff transfer to Derby County in England was scuttled due to Wolff being denied a work permit. But, the new Wizards ownership group stepped in and stopped the move after MLS had reached an agreement with Real Sociedad officials.
It will be really interesting to see how Johnson reacts to this news. We've seen how his buddy Clint Dempsey has reacted to having his potential move to Charlton Athletic blocked by MLS.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, and
not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to
send any comments or complaints to email@example.com. James promises to read
(but not to respond) to all of them.