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Phoenix Rising forward Santi Moar named April/May Player of the Month

Phoenix Rising FC forward Santi Moar celebrates after scoring a goal against San Diego Loyal SC at Wild Horse Pass in Chandler, Ariz., on June 5, 2021. (Owain Evans Photo)

Phoenix Rising FC forward Santi Moar was named USL Championship’s Player of the Month for April/May on Thursday.

The Spaniard did so after accumulating 53% of the total vote.

Moar scored five goals and notched two assists over five matches in the opening month of the 2021 campaign.

Phoenix Rising captured 12 points out of 15 in those games.

“I’m super thankful the league gave me this award,” Moar said in a press release.

“Obviously there are a lot of months to play still but it’s always a good thing. When players are getting recognized, it means the team is doing well and this is an effort from everybody.”

Moar currently leads the league in the race for the Golden Boot, as the PRFC winger’s six goals on the season place him atop the USLC scoring charts.

The Spaniard has scored one goal in all six games this year, and including his goal in the last regular-season game in 2020, he has scored in seven straight league matches to tie captain Solomon Asante’s club record set in 2019.

The USL Championship single-season record for consecutive games with a goal is eight, which was set by Hadji Barry in 2018.

Moar’s last goal came in the 90+1 minute and was the first of PRFC’s stunning two-goal stoppage-time comeback to draw San Diego Loyal SC, 2-2.

“We spoke after the last game. I hadn’t said a word to him and I was like, ‘Man, I was so close to subbing you off and the stupid record,'” Rising manager Rick Schantz said jokingly on Tuesday.

“And he said, ‘Coach, just don’t take me out. I’ll score.’ I said OK, I’ll remember that.”

Schantz added that Moar was in good company because former PRFC striker and current part-owner Didier Drogba used to tell the manager something similar regarding not subbing him off until he scored.

Phoenix Rising hosts Pacific Division opponent Tacoma Defiance on Saturday at Wild Horse Pass in Chandler.

Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. and will be audio broadcast live on ArizonaSports.com and on the Arizona Sports app.