Sporting's Zusi earns first career Player of the Week award

Graham Zusi bagged a brace on Portland.

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The breakout season for Sporting Kansas City's Graham Zusi continues.

The 25-year-old midfielder was rewarded for his standout performances in two Sporting victories to claim his first career Player of the Week award for Week 23 as voted on by the North American Soccer Reporters Association.

The MLS Player of the Month for June scored two goals in a 3-1 win over the Portland Timbers in midweek and registered another inspired 90 minutes on Sunday night in a 1-0 win over D.C. United as Sporting have risen up the table to second place in the Eastern Conference.

In his third season in MLS, Zusi has blown past his career highs for starts, goals and assists, earning a permanent spot in Sporting's midfield to the tune of five goals and four assists.

Watch Highlights: Sporting Kansas City 3, Portland Timbers 1

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2011 PLAYER OF THE WEEK WINNERS

Week 23: Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)

Week 22: Chris Pontius (D.C. United)

Week 21: Dwayne De Rosario (D.C. United)

Week 20: Dwayne De Rosario (D.C. United)

Week 19: Sanna Nyassi (Colorado Rapids)

Week 18: Mauro Rosales (Seattle Sounders)

Week 17: Fredy Montero (Seattle Sounders)

Week 16: Joel Lindpere (New York Red Bulls)

Week 15: Mike Magee (LA Galaxy)

Week 14: Bernardo Anor (Columbus Crew)

Week 13: Steven Lenhart (San Jose Earthquakes)

Week 12: Jean Alexandre (Real Salt Lake)

Week 11: Justin Mapp (Philadelphia Union)

Week 10: Jeff Parke (Seattle Sounders)

Week 9: Justin Braun (Chivas USA)

Week 8: Joao Plata (Toronto FC)

Week 7: Will Bruin (Houston Dynamo)

Week 6: Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy)

Week 5: Luke Rodgers (New York Red Bulls)

Week 4: David Ferreira (FC Dallas)

Week 3: Camilo (Vancouver Whitecaps)

Week 2: Javier Morales (Real Salt Lake)

Week 1: Omar Bravo (Sporting Kansas City)