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Riverhounds SC’s goalkeeper Danny Vitiello earns USL Championship’s Golden Glove Award

File Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC

From USL Championship report

USL Championship announced on Wednesday its statistical award-winners for the 2020 season, with Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC’s goalkeeper Danny Vitiello claiming the Golden Glove and Phoenix Rising FC’s taking the Assists Champion award for a second consecutive season.

A second-year professional, Vitiello became the Hounds’ starter midway through the season and quickly impressed on the way to a 0.500 goals-against average. Vitiello recorded five shutouts in eight appearances and saved two penalty kicks on four attempts with an overall save percentage of 77.8 percent.

Vitiello claimed the award by the narrowest of margins, edging out San Diego Loyal SC’s Jon Kempin, who finished the season with a 0.504 goals-against average in 10 appearances on loan from Columbus Crew SC.

Ironically, Vitiello split time this season with Tomas Gomez, who won the award twice before playing for Head Coach Bob Lilley in Rochester. Both keepers started eight matches for the Hounds this season.

Named the Championship’s Most Valuable Player in 2019, Asante became the first player to claim the Assists Champion award in back-to-back seasons. The Ghanaian standout recorded nine assists to claim the award this season and also led the Championship in Chances Created. Over the past three seasons, Asante has recorded a league-best 34 assists, to move into fourth place all-time in the Championship in assists.

With 14 goals, Junior Flemmings of Phoenix Rising FC is the winner of the 2020 Golden Boot.

The USL Championship’s statistical awards are the first to be announced, with the 2020 USL Championship All-League Teams to be announced in the week prior to the 2020 USL Championship Final on Sunday, November 1.

The 2020 USL Championship Awards including Most Valuable Player, Young Player of the Year, Coach of the Year, Defender of the Year and Goalkeeper of the Year will then be announced following the 2020 USL Championship Final on Sunday, November 1.

USL Championship Statistical Awards – Past Five Seasons
Golden Boot
2020 – Junior Flemmings, Phoenix Rising FC
2019 – Solomon Asante, Phoenix Rising FC
2018 – Cameron Lancaster, Louisville City FC
2017 – Dane Kelly, Reno 1868 FC
2016 – Sean Okoli, FC Cincinnati

Golden Glove
2020 – Danny Vitiello, Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC
2019 – Matt Pickens, Nashville SC
2018 – Evan Newton, FC Cincinnati
2017 – Tomas Gomez, Rochester Rhinos
2016 – Tomas Gomez, Rochester Rhinos

Assists Champion
2020 – Solomon Asante, Phoenix Rising FC
2019 – Solomon Asante, Phoenix Rising FC
2018 – Emmanuel Ledesma, FC Cincinnati
2017 – Chris Wehan, Reno 1868 FC
2016 – Villyan Bijev, Portland Timbers 2

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).

PItt MF Michael Sullivan

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