KENNESAW, GA (Aug. 3, 2010) - U.S. Women's National Team goalkeeper Hope Solo is the Women's Professional Soccer's Player of the Week for Week 16 after leading the expansion Atlanta Beat through its best week, with four points gained in a victory over the Washington Freedom and a draw with first-place FC Gold Pride.
Solo made five saves as the Beat (4-7-5) rallied for a 3-2 triumph Wednesday night over Washington, then made six more -- highlighted by big stops on Kelley O'Hara in the 42nd and 67th minutes and Shannon Boxx in the 62nd -- in a 0-0 draw with Gold Pride.
"She deserves this award," said Beat head coach Gareth O'Sullivan. "Hope has made some huge saves in recent games and brings a calmness to our back line."
The Beat's recent results have enabled the Atlanta club, in last place all season, to climb even with the Freedom at the bottom of the WPS standings and move within three points of fourth place. The top four teams reach the 2010 WPS Playoffs.
This is the first time Solo, who played for the U.S. at the 2007 Women's World Cup and 2008 Beijing Olympics, has been honored as Player of the Week. She is also the first Atlanta Beat player to receive this honor.
The WPS Player of Week is selected by a panel of journalists from the North American Soccer Reporters.