Edson Buddle of the LA Galaxy has been named MLS Player of the Week for Week 12 of the season.
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Buddle named MLS Player of the Week

NEW YORK -- Los Angeles Galaxy forward Edson Buddle was voted Major League Soccer's Player of the Week for Week 12 of the 2008 season. Buddle scored his second hat trick of the season and led the Galaxy to a 3-0 victory over the San Jose Earthquakes, which put them alone atop the Western Conference standings.

The Galaxy took the lead on Buddle's first goal of the evening in the sixth minute and never looked back. David Beckham crossed a ball into the center of the penalty area, for Josh Tudela who flicked the ball back with this head. Buddle, from just outside of the 18-yard box, blasted a right-footed volley into the left side netting.

The game was tight for quite a while after the opening goal and the Galaxy did not strike again until midway through the second half. In the 63rd minute Ely Allen laid off a ball to Ante Jazic streaking down the sideline. Jazic sent in a cross from the left side of the field, which Buddle finished with an impressive diving header to direct the ball into the right corner of the goal past Earthquakes goalkeeper Joe Cannon.

Buddle completed the hat trick five minutes later. Jazic played a ball out to Mike Randolph on the left wing, Randolph lofted the ball into the penalty area for Buddle, who rose over a defender and headed the ball into the top left corner of the goal.

Saturday's performance was Buddle's fourth career hat trick, placing him third on the all-time MLS list behind Stern John (5) and Diego Serna (5). This is Buddle's seventh Player of the Week award. He won the award in Week 8 of 2008, when he recorded a hat trick versus FC Dallas in a 5-1 road victory. The Galaxy (6-4-2, 20 points) return to action on Saturday, June 21 when they host the Columbus Crew at 10:30 p.m. ET.

The Major League Soccer Player of the Week is selected each week of the MLS regular season by a panel of journalists from The North American Soccer Reporters (NASR). The group consists of members of print, television, radio and online media. More information and membership information can be found at http://www.soccerreporters.com/.

2008 Player of the Week Winners

Week 1: Terry Cooke (Colorado Rapids)
Week 2: David Beckham (Los Angeles Galaxy)
Week 3: Guillermo Barros Schelotto (Columbus Crew)
Week 4: Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy)
Week 5: Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy)
Week 6: David Beckham (Los Angeles Galaxy)
Week 7: Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew)
Week 8: Edson Buddle (Los Angles Galaxy)
Week 9: Cuauhtemoc Blanco (Chicago Fire)
Week 10: Robbie Findley (Real Salt Lake)
Week 11: Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo)
Week 12: Edson Buddle (Los Angeles Galaxy)