Chris Lema’s success against Atlanta United II continued this past weekend with an outstanding four goal performance. While not a major goal scorer for the team, Lema had an incredible performance in the 8-1 win against Atlanta. The twenty-two-year-old has scored five of his six career USL Championship goals against Atlanta after Saturday’s match. He scored his first professional goal in a victory against Atlanta in July of last year.
Fast forward to July 13 in 2019, where Lema produced one of the best individual performances this season for both the Red Bulls II and the entire league. Chris’s play on Saturday set the club record for most goals by a single player in a game, as well as the first time this USL Championship season a player has scored four goals in a single game. This was also only the ninth time in league history that a player has accomplished this feat, with Lema joining elite company such as Dom Dwyer, Ulrich Ewolo, Matt Fondy, Djiby Fall, Ethan Zubak, Irvin Herrera, Petery Byers, and Johnny Arteaga.
Lema was asked about his performance on Saturday and credited his success to the rest of the team, saying: “I can't really take all the credit myself, the team did a good job of pretty much ending the game early and getting the good goals and defensively being on top of everything. So it made my job easier especially at attacking mid. So, my performance really has a lot to do with just how well the team ended up doing at the end of the day”.
Lema’s four goal game was nothing short of spectacular, and helped the team end a huge week for the league standings. Lema’s performance was recognized by the league as he was placed into the USL Championship’s Team of the Week.