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Brett earns USL Player of the Week honors after three goal, one assist performance

Hounds Neco Brett earned Player of the Week honors after 3 goal, 1 assist performance vs TFCII on Saturday (Photo - Pgh Riverhounds)

Late in the Riverhounds 4-0 win over Toronto FC II on Saturday in the Highmark Stadium press box, members of the Pittsburgh soccer media present for the game were all in agreement that it would come as a surprise if Neco Brett didn’t get some sort of recognition from USL this week for his three goal, one assist performance.

Neco Brett (Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC)

Brett’s big day included his first career professional hat trick, in the club’s 4-nil victory over Toronto FC II this past Saturday.

According to the USL, Brett received 45 percent of the poll conducted by a national panel of independent media representing every USL market. Louisville City FC defender Paco Craig finished second with 35 percent, while Real Monarchs SLC goalkeeper Connor Sparrow was third with 15 percent.

Scoreless after the first 45 minutes of play against Toronto, Brett helped the Hounds breakthrough in the 52nd minute with the club’s first tally of the 2018 season. He followed with goals in the 59th and 83rd minutes before capping off the scoring by assisting on Christiano François’ goal in the 88thminute.

The hat trick, coming in the span of 31 minutes – the fastest in club history eclipsing José Angulo’s 39-minute effort – marked the fourth ever by a Hounds player in the current era of the USL (since 2011) and the first since Rob Vincent against Wilmington on Aug. 1, 2015.

In addition, Brett is the first Hounds player to be tabbed USL Player of the Week since Corey Hertzog captured the honor after the 2017 season opener in March. The Kingston, Jamaica native currently stands tied for fourth in the league in goals scored with three.

Riverhounds SC looks to continue its strong start to the season this weekend, hosting Ottawa Fury FC at 7 p.m. on Saturday, April 14 at Highmark Stadium.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

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