COMMERCE CITY, Colo. - Colorado Rapids 2 (6-0-1, 19 pts) will face off against Austin FC II (5-0-3, 19 pts) for the first time in league history this weekend. The two top Western Conference teams will host their match on Sunday, May 14, at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium in a battle that will see the sides compete for a first place standing in the conference. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. MT and the game will be broadcast on MLSNEXTPro.com.
Rapids 2 is coming off a match that saw the team put up its highest scoring game in its two years of history in the league. The 5-0 victory over LA Galaxy II marked Colorado’s sixth win of the season, keeping their seven game unbeaten streak alive. On top of the team’s five goals, Academy goalkeeper Adam Beaudry earned the team its second clean sheet of the season, an improvement on their one clean sheet during the 2022 MLS NEXT Pro season.
The visitors came out swinging in the opening minutes with the first goal coming at the feet of Marlon Vargas for his first of the season. Following Vargas’ goal were two more first time goals for Daniel Garcia and Rémi Cabral, who made his return to LA Galaxy II, his former club, for the first time since joining the Rapids. Garcia’s goal marked his first-ever professional goal and was recognized by the league after they named him the MLS NEXT Rising Star of the Matchday for week seven of play.
The match was highlighted by the groundbreaking performance of midfielder Yosuke Hanya who bagged a brace in the game against Los Angeles. He now claims the league’s top spot for goals scored this year with seven goals in six matches. The Japanese international continues to be a force in the league in both goal scoring and playmaking, earning him the title of the league’s inaugural MLS NEXT Pro Player of the Month award for the opening month of the 2023 season.
Heading into the weekend, Hanya will suit up a day early due to his recent call up to the Colorado Rapids first team roster on a short-term agreement. Hanya will be available for selection for the Rapids’ match against the Philadelphia Union on Saturday, May 13, at DICK’S Sporting Goods Park (7:30 p.m. MT; Apple TV - MLS Season Pass, Altitude Sports Radio 92.5 FM).