D.C. United recorded a hat trick yesterday, which made him the pretty obvious pick for MLS player of the week today. I went along with the pack, giving my first vote to Pontius, but my second pick to LA keeper Josh Saunders.
Here’s the news from the league:
D.C. United midfielder Chris Pontius was voted Major League Soccer Player of the Week by the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) for Week 7 of the 2012 MLS season. Pontius scored three goals on Sunday evening at RFK Stadium, leading United to a 4-1 victory over the New York Red Bulls.
Pontius started the scoring early with his first goal in the eighth minute of the match. Pontius stole the ball from New York’s Thierry Henry near midfield then raced towards goal and sent a shot from the top of the box over goalkeeper Ryan Meara.
Just 24 minutes later Pontius notched his second goal by finishing on a Maicon Santos cross that deflected off the defense in front of the net.
The 24 year-old completed his hat trick in the 69th minute. Pontius picked up the ball 40-yards from goal, sprinted up the middle of the field through the New York defense, and slipped a shot into the corner of the net.
Sunday’s feat was the California-native’s first MLS career hat trick and his fourth multiple goal game. His last multi-goal game came on August 13, 2011 against Vancouver Whitecaps FC, a performance for which he was also awarded Player of the Week honors.
The MLS Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by a panel of journalists from NASR. The group consists of members of print, television, radio and online media. More information and membership information can be found at http://www.soccerreporters.com/.