1) Hat Trick Hero
It finally happened - star midfielder and icon of Charlotte soccer Jorge Herrera scored the Independence’s first ever hat trick in a 5-1 victory against Saint Louis FC. The 2017 season marks the third season of the franchise’s existence, but no player has managed to score three goals in one game until Herrera’s heroics. Herrera was the first player to be signed to the team, and this was his first hat trick in 19 seasons of professional soccer.
"I was just in the right spot, and I took advantage of it," said the midfielder. "I was very blessed to have those three chances to score."
2) Winning Record
With the victory over Saint Louis, the Jacks are now on a six game unbeaten streak and a five game winning streak - the longest winning streak in franchise history! This streak began with the tie with FC Cincinnati on June 10th and subsequent victories over the Harrisburg City Islanders, the Richmond Kickers, the Rochester Rhinos, the Pittsburgh Riverhounds, and Saint Louis FC. The Jacks have also been victorious at their new home stadium in Matthews, winning all three games played there so far.
"Right now, the confidence in the team is very high no matter who's playing," said Enzo Martinez. "Things start going our way and we're just enjoying our soccer right now."
3) Oh Captain, My Captain
Independence captain and defender by trade Bilal Duckett got in on the scoring action, as well! A 4-1 victory wasn’t enough for Duckett, so the captain connected with Alex Martinez’s cross in the 78th minute to score his first goal of the season and the team's fifth goal of the night.
"It's always good to get a set piece goal, so good for Bilal," said Independence head coach Mike Jeffries. "I'm happy for him to get that."