Eriq Zavaleta with the San Antonio Scorpions
Courtesy of NASL

MLS on Loan: Eriq Zavaleta helps San Antonio Scorpions pick up shutout win in NASL season finale

Fireworks were bursting in the NASL on July 4 both on and off the field as the stars aligned for Atlanta to take the title.

On the biggest night of the NASL Spring Season, the Silverbacks took a 3-0 win over Minnesota United FC and the Carolina RailHawks fell short of their needed draw, giving Atlanta cause to celebrate.

MLS connections were weaved into the fabric of the evening for Atlanta. Among the goalscorers was ex-FC Dallas Homegrown player Ruben Luna, who cemented the victory with an 18-yard rocket to put the score out of reach at 3-0. The Mexican forward is coached by Brian Haynes, who played and coached with Dallas in the league’s opening decade. Former MLS and US national team legend Eric Wynalda serves as technical director for the team. 

On that same night, Seattle Sounders forward Eriq Zavaleta (above) played a role in downing the RailHawks 2-0 with 66 minutes played for the San Antonio Scorpions. Zavaleta had been pivotal in rectifying the Scorpions' season and giving them any hope at the crown in the lead-up to the night’s theatrics. San Antonio finished third in the Spring standings.

In USL PRO action, the Richmond Kickers continued their undefeated ascension through the standings. With D.C. United head coach Ben Olsen making use of players like Taylor Kemp, Casey Townsend, Conor Shanosky and Andrew Dykstra with the MLS club, Richmond were left with only the services of young D.C. Homegrown player Michael Seaton, who went the full 90 as the Kickers clinched a 3-2 victory over the Dayton Dutch Lions.

The Kickers now sit in second place, one point behind Orlando City.

For their part, Orlando have struggled to win since the departure of Dom Dwyer and the waiving of Yann Sango’o. Two road draws this past weekend vs. Wilmington and Charleston, respectively, have the Lions in a precarious position at the top of the table. Jon Kempin and Christian Duke remain the only Sporting KC players currently dispatched to reinforce Orlando.

Like D.C. United, the Philadelphia Union also recalled their contingent of USL PRO loanees at Harrisburg this weekend for their match vs. Houston. The City Islanders fell 2-1 to the Wilmington Hammerheads without their MLS support.

Rochester made good use of their Revolution loanees with all four seeing time in a 3-1 loss to Dayton last Thursday and again in a 2-2 draw vs. Charlotte the following Saturday. However, Tyler Polak was the only one to go the full 90 in both matches.

The full list of on-loan MLSers in action this past week follows below:


Orlando City SC 2, Wilmington Hammerheads 2; Wednesday, July 3
GK Jon Kempin 
(Sporting Kansas City) - Did not play
M Christian Duke (Sporting Kansas City) - Started, played 90 minutes

Rochester Rhinos 1, Dayton Dutch Lions 3; Thursday, July 4
D Bilal Duckett
(New England Revolution) - Started, played 83 minutes
F Matt Horth (New England Revolution) - Substitute, played 32 minutes
M Gabe Latigue (New England Revolution) - Started, played 79 minutes, one assist
D Tyler Polak (New England Revolution) - Started, played 90 minutes

LA Blues 6, Antigua Barracuda 0; Thursday July 4
F Aaron Horton
(Columbus Crew) - Did not play

Orlando City SC 1, Charleston Battery 1; Friday, July 5
GK Jon Kempin, Orlando
(Sporting Kansas City) - Started, played 90 minutes
M Christian Duke, Orlando (Sporting Kansas City) - Substitute, played 45 minutes
M Bryce Alderson, Charleston (Vancouver Whitecaps) - Substitute, played 20 minutes

LA Blues 2, Pittsburgh Riverhounds 1; Saturday, July 6
F Aaron Horton
(Columbus Crew) - Started, played 45 minutes

Rochester Rhinos 2, Charlotte Eagles 2, Saturday, July 6
D Bilal Duckett
(New England Revolution) - Substitute, played 30 minutes
F Matt Horth (New England Revolution) - Started, played 45 minutes
M Gabe Latigue (New England Revolution) - Started, played 45 minutes
D Tyler Polak (New England Revolution) - Started, played 90 minutes

Richmond Kickers 3, Dayton Dutch Lions 2, Saturday, July 6
F Michael Seaton
(D.C. United) - Started, played 90 minutes


Atlanta Silverbacks 3, Minnesota United FC 0; Thursday, July 4
F Kellen Gulley
(Chicago Fire) - Did not play

San Antonio Scorpions 2, Carolina RailHawks 0; Thursday, July 4
F Eriq Zavaleta
(Seattle Sounders) - Started, played 66 minutes

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