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Loan Watch: Dykstra, Vines and Calvert featured in Charlotte's battle vs Bethlehem

Charlotte Independence are now without a win in the last four, managing just one point in that spell, with the latest setback being a 3-0 home loss to playoff rivals Bethlehem Steel last Wednesday.

Three of the four Rapids players on loan with the club’s USL affiliate saw time in the most recent encounter. Goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra and homegrown defender Sam Vines both played the entire game, while striker Caleb Calvert came off the bench early in the second half. Ricardo Perez was an unused substitute.

The loss, and with results elsewhere, means Charlotte now sit 11th in the Eastern Conference, four points and three places below the playoff line. They next face a testing trip to second place Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC this Saturday.

In the Western Conference, on-loan Rapids midfielder Sam Hamilton went the distance for Colorado Springs Switchbacks as they fell 2-1 at Tulsa Roughnecks on Saturday. This was only a second win of the season for the Roughnecks, and the result dropped the Switchbacks to 10th in the standings, two points below the playoff line.

Next for the Switchbacks is a trip to Phoenix Rising FC on August 25. Before then, Phoenix plays two games, with a trip to Las Vegas Lights on Saturday, before a midweek match at home against San Antonio FC.

And Phoenix will be aiming for a little consistency, having gone W-L-W-L-W-L over the previous six games. Despite a hat-trick from Solomon Asante, Phoenix were downed 4-3 at home by Orange County SC, who crept above them in the standings as a result. Nobody has played more minutes for Phoenix this season than Mike da Fonte, who was again on duty for the Arizona club.

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