Toronto's Laryea, Houston's Schmidt win MLS, NWSL weekly awards in Canada sweep

TORONTO — Canadian fullback Richie Laryea of Toronto FC has been named MLS player of the week while Houston Dash midfielder Sophie Schmidt has won NWSL weekly honours.

Canada Soccer says it marks the first time that Canadians have won the awards for the same week.

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Schmidt, a 32-year-old from Abbotsford, B.C., scored from the penalty spot, had an assist and played a role in Houston's third goal Saturday in a 3-1 win over the Orlando Pride. It was the Dash's first home match in 367 days.

Laryea scored one goal and helping set up two more in Toronto FC's 3-1 win over Columbus Crew SC in East Hartford, Conn.

The 25-year-old from Toronto had a hand in TFC's first two goals Sunday and then scored on a brilliant solo effort in the 76th minute, dancing past two defenders before firing home a shot from a tight angle.

Jozy Altidore opened the scoring in the 48th minute after Laryea sent a low cross to Alejandro Pozuelo, who put the ball on a platter for Altidore to hammer home. Pozuelo made it 2-1 in the 59th minute after Laryea found him just outside the penalty box.

It was the first of six regular-season contests for Toronto at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field. All three Canadian teams have been forced to find a pandemic home away from home because of travel restrictions barring U.S. clubs from crossing the border.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 28, 2020.

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