The United Soccer League (USL) announced yesterday that Sacramento Republic FC forward Cameron Iwasa has been named USL Championship Player of the Week for his masterful performance against OKC Energy FC that propelled the Republic to a 4-1 victory.
Iwasa received 62 percent of the vote from a national poll of independent media representing every USL Championship market.
It was Iwasa’s first career hat trick as a member of the Republic and fastest hat trick in club history (27 minutes). Amazingly, he recorded all three of his goals in a span of 11 minutes.
Following the match, I asked Republic FC Manager Simon Elliott about Iwasa’s performance, and sort of jokingly asked what more he can do for the club. I felt his response was telling in terms of his expectation for Iwasa and Iwasa’s own plan to push to reach another level.
“Well, I think he wants to find out”, said Elliott. “And that’s why he’s done well today. Last week he worked incredibly hard...scored a penalty. This week, he and the team focused a lot on their technique and I think it showed. “Cameron should be pleased, but he knows..we know that there’s more in [him]. Like you said, let’s see where his limit is. Let’s go for it.”
As I wrote last December, taking absolutely nothing away from the great Rodrigo Lopez, I believe Iwasa is on the cusp of becoming the greatest Republic player of all-time. Make no mistake about it, there are still a few boxes to check for Iwasa to become the Republic GOAT, but he has earned the right to be in the conversation.
Four goals and an assist through three games? All I can say is — keep it going Cam.