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 United Soccer League Championship

USL Jägermeister Cup Team of the Round - Round 1

May 2, 2024 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) News Release

TAMPA, Fla. - USL League One today announced the Team of the Round for Round 1 of the 2024 USL Jägermeister Cup with Union Omaha forward Missael Rodríguez named Player of the Round presented by Konami eFootball with the fastest brace in Omaha history.

After five appearances and 170 minutes played with the club across USL League One and U.S. Open Cup play to open the season, Missael Rodríguez scored for the first time with the Owls in his sixth appearance - twice in the span of two minutes. On loan from Major League Soccer side Chicago Fire FC, the former United States youth international's first professional brace helped the USL League One Players' Shield holders earn a point in regulation and both advance to and win a penalty kick shootout against Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC on Wednesday evening.

Scoring twice in one minute and 22 seconds, Rodríguez's brace was quicker than any Omaha player has ever scored in succession, surpassing the previous record of Greg Hurst's two goals in three minutes and 18 seconds to complete his hat trick against New England Revolution II on June 13, 2021 in league play.

For the majority of the last two seasons, the Chicago Fire FC Academy star played with Chicago Fire FC II in MLS NEXT Pro. In 39 league appearances, Rodríguez scored nine goals and contributed one assist. Two weeks after making his professional debut with the Fire's reserve team in MLS NEXT Pro in April 2022, Rodríguez made his first appearance for the Fire's senior team in a loss to Union Omaha in the Third Round of the 2022 U.S. Open Cup. Rodríguez's MLS debut came as a second-half substitute in a 3-0 victory against CF Montréal in July 2023.

In the first USL Jägermeister Cup Team of the Round, nine of the 12 teams in action earned representation. Omaha led the league with its four players across the Team of the Round and Team of the Round bench, while Lexington, Knoxville and Northern Colorado also placed multiple starters on the Team of the Round.

COACH - Darren Powell, Lexington SC: The former Inter Miami CF assistant coach recorded a signature victory on Sunday afternoon, guiding his nine-man squad to victory over visiting Madison. Across all competitions, Lexington became only the second USL League One club to win a match after receiving two red cards, joining Union Omaha (vs. RIC, July 8, 2023).

GK - Amal Knight, Lexington SC: The Jamaica international finished tied with the second-most saves on the week (5) and was one of two goalkeepers to keep a clean sheet and earn three points. Knight also completed over 75% of his passes and registered 10 recoveries.

D - Jorge Corrales, Lexington SC: The 32-year-old Cuba international registered his first goal contribution with the club, assisting fellow defender Kaelon Fox's clutch winner in stoppage time. Corrales also contributed with an 88% passing accuracy, five recoveries and three duels won.

D - Kaelon Fox, Lexington SC: Lexington's inaugural signing and former University of Kentucky talent bagged his first goal for the club in stoppage time to seal a remarkable winner while down two men against Madison. Among players who recorded 90 minutes of action in Round 1, Fox finished with a round-best 97.5% passing accuracy; the defender also added seven clearances, three recoveries and two duels won.

D - Jordan Skelton, One Knoxville SC: The 2023 USL League One Defender of the Year finalist scored his second professional goal - both with Knoxville - which served as the match-winning score against Smoky Mountain Smackdown rival Chattanooga on Saturday. Helping Knoxville claim the first-ever win in the USL Jägermeister Cup, Skelton tallied eight recoveries, seven clearances, six duels won and four completed long passes.

M - Ryen Jiba, Union Omaha: The 2022 USL League One Young Player of the Year runner-up and 19th overall selection in MLS SuperDraft 2023 has hit the ground running in his return to Omaha, producing an assist on Missael Rodríguez's first goal of the match. The 23-year-old also added an 80% passing accuracy, six duels won, three interceptions, three recoveries and three fouls won.

M - Callum Johnson, One Knoxville SC: In his 37th appearance for the club, Johnson registered his sixth goal contribution for Knoxville, assisting Jordan Skelton's match-winning goal in the 49th minute. The 26-year-old also recorded an additional two chances created, five recoveries and two duels won.

M - Evan Lee, Greenville Triumph SC: Triumph SC's all-time appearances leader scored his third goal for the club in his 148th appearance, helping his side salvage a draw in the 89th minute against Richmond. The 30-year-old also added nine duels won, six recoveries, three fouls won and two clearances against his former club.

M - Bruno Rendón, Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC: Shaping up to become the next ultra-productive Northern Colorado defensive talent, Rendón scored his first goal of the season - the Hailstorm's first in USL Jägermeister Cup play. The 23-year-old Cuban reeled in five recoveries, won five duels and placed two shots on target.

F - Ethan Hoard, Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC: Making his USL League One Team of the Week debut a week ago, the first-year professional has earned a position on the first USL Jägermeister Cup Team of the Round with his two-goal-contribution performance against Omaha. With one goal and one assist, the former trialist tallied his second multi-goal-contribution match in just his seventh professional outing.

F - Juan Carlos Obregón, Jr., Charlotte Independence: The late addition to Charlotte's 2024 roster has made an instant impact, scoring four goals across his last four matches. In addition to netting Charlotte's lone goal against South Georgia, Obregón, Jr. also completed 80% of his passes, won seven duels and tallied two interceptions.

F - Missael Rodríguez, Union Omaha: The Chicago Fire FC loanee registered his first professional brace in less than two minutes. The 21-year-old talent added six shots, won three duels and earned a pair of fouls.

BENCH: Wallis Lapsley (OMA), Ahmed Longmire (SPK), Luca Mastrantonio (OMA), Luis Álvarez (CLT), Robert Coronado (CV), Pedro Fonseca (TRM), Shavon John-Brown (CV)

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