Jacksonville Sports Day

NASL: Armada FC Midfielder Jack Blake Named Player of the Week

(FLORIDA SPORTS WIRE) – Jacksonville Armada FC midfielder Jack Blake continues to show why he’s one of the most exciting young players in the North American Soccer League (NASL).

The Englishman played a direct role in three goals during Jacksonville’s 4-4 draw against the New York Cosmos on Sunday. The performance was good enough to earn Blake this week’s NASL Player of the Week honors.

Blake, 23, has made a name for himself as a free-kick taker this year. In a span of four minutes midway through the first half, he whipped in a pair of free kicks that led directly to Armada FC goals. In the 22nd minute, Kalen Ryden met Blake’s free kick and headed it off the post, giving way to Drew Beckie to clean up the rebound. Just four minutes later, another Blake free kick found its way to Ryden, who was able to convert the second time around.

After relinquishing a 3-1 lead, Jacksonville trailed, 4-3, late in the game, but Blake came to the rescue again. In the 79th minute, the Nottingham native played a through ball to Charles Eloundou, who buried the equalizing goal. When it was all said and done, Blake left the field with a pair of assists in the 4-4 draw.

The performance capped off an already strong week for Blake, who fired home Jacksonville’s lone goal against FC Edmonton on Wednesday night.

The 5-foot-11 midfielder has been quite the find for Armada FC coach Mark Lowry. Blake was quiet in his first NASL season with Minnesota in 2016, but he has since blossomed into one of the league’s top midfielders. Going into the final weekend of the Fall Season, Blake has nine goals and four assists to his name in league play.

Sunday’s result kept Jacksonville’s postseason hopes alive, but Blake and his teammates surely left the field disappointed after watching their 3-1 halftime lead evaporate. Now, Armada FC needs a win over the second-place San Francisco Deltas on Saturday, coupled with a New York Cosmos loss against Puerto Rico FC.

Jacksonville and San Francisco kick off at 8 p.m. ET on Saturday at historic Kezar Stadium in Golden Gate Park. The game can be seen live on Twitter on the @sfdeltas page.

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