Wells named Player of the Week
SECAUCUS, N.J. - MetroStars goalkeeper Zach Wells was selected as the Honda MLS Player of the Week for Week 11 which ended on June 12, 2005. The second year player earned his fourth shutout of the season, registering 14 saves in the MetroStars 0-0 tie with D.C. United on Sunday evening at Giants Stadium. The 14 saves in a game were one off the record that was accomplished by Tony Meola as a MetroStars' player on April 5, 1997 also against D.C. United.
D.C. United went at the MetroStars and Wells from the start and continued their offensive push for the entire 90 minutes. When the game ended, they had out shot the Metros 28-8, including 14 shots on goal which Wells saved.
After making seven saves before the break, Wells saved his best for the second half. United inserted Alecko Eskandarian to begin the final 45 minutes, and he tested Wells twice within the first three minutes. He was freed towards goal by Christian Gomez's flick header, but his low shot from the right side of the 18-yard box rolled just wide of the far post.
"I knew in the first five minutes, when I had to make a few saves early on, I knew it was going to be a long day," Wells told the North Jersey Herald News after the game. "[It was important] to get the point and keep them behind us in the standings, and give us a chance next week to climb the table again."
After United midfielder Dema Kovalenko was tripped up by Carlos Mendes near the top of the box, Eskandarian followed his blocked free kick with a blast that was pushed over the bar by Wells in the 54th minute. In the 61st minute Wells stopped Eskandarian's diving header and in the 75th minute he lunged to his right to again rob Eskandarian.
Eight different United players tested Wells throughout the game, but none was able to break through.
Wells was the clear winner ahead of Columbus Crew midfielder Mario Rodriguez and Los Angeles Galaxy forward Landon Donovan. The Honda Major League Soccer Player of the Week is selected every week throughout the MLS regular season by a panel of journalists from the Professional Soccer Reporters Association (PSRA).
2005 PLAYER OF THE WEEK WINNERS
Week 1: Edson Buddle (Columbus Crew)
Week 2: Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy)
Week 3: Jon Busch (Columbus Crew)
Week 4: Clint Dempsey (New England Revolution)
Week 5: Amado Guevara (MetroStars)
Week 6: Freddy Adu (D.C. United)
Week 7: Josh Wolff (Kansas City Wizards)
Week 8: Ronnie O'Brien (FC Dallas)
Week 9: Carlos Ruiz (FC Dallas)
Week 10: Nate Jaqua (Chicago Fire)
Week 11: Zach Wells (MetroStars)