Columbus Crew SC today announced that forward Kei Kamara was voted Major League Soccer Player of the Week by the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) for Week 23 of the 2015 MLS season. It is the second time this year that he has earned the honor after a two-goal performance versus Chicago in Week 12, and the third time overall in 2015 that a Black & Gold player has earned the national recognition.
Kamara, 30, earned the award following his brace at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park against the Colorado Rapids on Saturday, August 8, fueling a 2-1 road victory for the Black & Gold. Kamara’s two-goal effort was his fifth of the 2015 regular season and the 11th of his MLS career.
The Sierra Leone international registered both goals on Saturday in the second half, helping Crew SC overcome a one-goal deficit to win on the road. His first goal was a powerful left-footed strike in the 52nd minute, with his second coming 12 minutes later following a low cross by Hector Jimenez from the right side.
The pair of goals gave Kamara 17 on the season, re-capturing the 2015 MLS regular-season goal-scoring lead from Toronto FC’s Sebastian Giovinco, who has 16. Kamara’s 17th goal also ties him with Brian McBride’s 1996 campaign for third place in the Black & Gold’s all-time single-season goal-scoring list. In the midst of his second stint with Crew SC, Kamara now has 69 career MLS tallies, a figure that ties him with Philadelphia’s Conor Casey for fifth-most among all active League players.
Kamara is the first member of Crew SC to be named Player of the Week twice in a single season since Federico Higuain achieved that feat in Weeks 25 and 26 of the 2012 campaign, as well as the seventh all-time Black & Gold player to earn the honor at least twice in a single season, joining Brian McBride (1996), Brad Friedel (1996), Stern John (1998), Edson Buddle (2004), Guillermo Barros Schelotto (2007, 2008) and Higuain.