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Rising FC’s Flemmings wins Golden Boot, Asante named Assists Champion

Phoenix Rising FC captain and forward Solomon Asante. (Arizona Sports/Ashley Orellana)

Phoenix Rising FC had a pair of forwards receive USL Championship regular season accolades on Wednesday.

PRFC captain Solomon Asante was named the 2020 Assists Champion thanks to his league-leading nine assists, while Junior Flemmings was given the Golden Boot for his USLC-best 14 goals over the course of the 16-game coronavirus-shortened season.

Asante becomes the first player in USL Championship history to win the award in back-to-back campaigns after his 17 assists broke the league’s single-season record in route to his 2019 MVP.

The Ghanaian now has a combined 34 assists in his three USLC seasons, good enough to rank him fourth all-time in league history.

Prior to the league announcing that Flemmings had been awarded the 2020 Golden Boot, I asked Phoenix Rising GM Bobby Dulle if the club had any discussions about not accepting the award should it still be given to the Jamaican after he was given a six-game suspension following the use of a homophobic slur against San Diego Loyal SC’s Collin Martin on Sept. 30.

“Not a lot of discussion about that,” Dulle said. “But I do know that that’s an award that the league issues and it’s based on the season and it’s pretty factual.

“But it’s not something we’ve had a lot of dialogue about in the past 5-6 days and I would assume as well that he remains eligible for any league awards.”

Other USL Championship awards include the First and Second All-League Teams in addition to the MVP. Flemmings surely would have been in the discussion for the league’s most valuable player award, which is voted upon by media and club reps.

Per a USL spokesperson, the Jamaican remains eligible for all 2020 season accolades.

The All-League Teams will be announced in the week prior to Nov. 1’s USL Championship Final, while the MVP and coach, defender, goalkeeper and young player of the year awards will come out after the league’s trophy has been lifted.