Player Ratings: Birmingham Legion 3-0 San Antonio

A solid evening's work

Not to be outdone by the Stallions, the Legion completed a two-sport blanking of San Antonio Wednesday evening in some style. Here are our assessments of their individual performances:

GK: JAYDEN HIBBERT – 7. Jayden’s introduction to the USL Championship couldn’t have gone more smoothly. He was credited with one save – in the 24th minute on a long ball from Mitchell Taintor 10 yards into his own half that he handled off his chest. Indeed, he spent most of the game hanging out near the center circle. 74% accurate on 31 passes, which is…novel.

LB: A.J. PATERSON – 8. AJ, and to a slightly lesser extent Derek Dodson, played most of the game as if they were wingbacks (they had 6 crosses between them, none successful). AJ had just 1 tackle and 1 clearance, and won 3 of 9 duels. But he got off 3 shots – 2 on target – and got the assist on Alex’s goal. Connecting on 82% of 62 passes is also not shabby.

CB: PHANUEL KAVITA – 7. Phanny took on the bulk of the defensive work – not that there was all that much to do. 1 tackle and 5 clearances, and he was the winner on 6 of 9 duels. No attacking contributions, but he was an impressive 92% accurate on a hefty 59 passes.

CB: ALEX CROGNALE – 8. Scoring on corners is easy when you are taller than well, almost everyone. And yes, that ball did go in. Alex also had a few opportunities to shoot from open play, but never actually pulled the trigger. 1 tackle, 2 clearances and 4 of 5 in duels. He made 60 passes and was good on 53 of them.

RB: DEREK DODSON – 7. Not to be outdone by AJ, Derek also got an assist on Tyler Pasher’s late goal. Defensively, just 1 clearance and 3 duels won. 34 of 47 in passing was not particularly good though.

LDM: DAWSON MCCARTNEY – 8. He may not be Jonny Dean fast, but he’s damn close. He’s also sneaky and has a Tyler-like ability to change direction. He was good for an 84% accuracy rate on 51 passes and took a total of 4 shots, 1 on target, 1 off and 2 blocked. He also recorded 1 tackle, 1 clearance, 2 blocks and 1 interception while winning 4 of 5 duels. The performance gets him our Man of the Match honors.

CDM: KOBE HERNANDEZ-FOSTER –8. Kobe had a quietly strong game. He had just one shot – it was on target – but created 4 scoring chances. 86% completion rate on 57 passes, 2 of 4 in duels and 1 interception.

RDM: JAKE RUFE – 6.5. Jake only played 45 minutes. Other than a deserved yellow card, he did just fine but wasn’t the attacking oomph that this game really needed. He tried just 21 passes and was good on a whopping 95% of them, and perfect in the attacking half. 1 tackle and 3 of 6 in duels.

LW: TYLER PASHER – 8. The Legion front three were pretty busy all evening. Indeed, they combined for 34 duels; the back four racked up just 26. Tyler took four shots total, scoring once. One other was saved, 1 was off frame and 1 was blocked. 4 scoring chances in total. He also made 10 crosses, 3 of which were good (all but two were corners). 92% accurate on 38 passes is huge for a winger.

RW: PROSPER KASIM – 7. Prosper also took 4 shots; 1 on 2 off and 1 blocked. Only one was credited as a chance. 81% of his 53 passes connected; also huge. NO goals, but a pretty important contribution nonetheless.

FWD: ENZO MARTINEZ – 8. Enzo took just two shots. Both were blocked but whoever stopped them was smarting afterwards; they were rockets. He did get the assist on Preston’s goal, though. He was also involved in 14 duels which sounds prototypically Enzo.

SUB: PRESTON TABORT ETAKA – 8. Coming on at half-time and scoring within 10 minutes is perfect. 1 other shot on target and 1 more blocked. Preston also has blazing speed and his footwork and ball control are things of beauty.

SUB: STEFANO PINHO – 7. 4 official minutes, in which he logged 4 passes, connecting on 3 of them, and 1 offside call. But there really wasn’t much for him to do at that point.

SUB: MOSES MENSAH – 7. Also 4 minutes as additional defensive support. 2 passes, both good, 1 duel won and 1 tackle. Not much, but that’s cleanup work for you.

SUB: RAMIZ HAMOUDA – 7. Another 4-minute outing. 6 of 7 in, passing. 1 tackle 1 duel won. Another good showing from the youngster.

SUB: MIGUEL PEREZ – 7. Came on a minute into second-half stoppage time. He connected on his only pass and won his 2 duels.

HC: TOMMY SOEHN – 8. Tommy stuck with his 4-3-3 formation against San Antonio’s cynical 3-5-2. A ridiculously high press and it worked out great, even if the opponent was plagued by injury issues.

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