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Harris named USL Championship Young Player of the Year

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Harris is the first player to win this award in club history.

Harris celebrating a goal
Thad Bell

The USL Championship announced that Sporting Kansas City II forward Wilson Harris has been named USL Championship’s Young Player of the Year.

The SKC Academy product scored eight goals in 16 matches in 2020 and also recently signed his first contract with the first team. Harris is the first player in organization history to win this award, although Wan Kuzain was the first to be nominated in 2018 before Felipe Hernandez’s 2019 nomination for this award.

The 20-year-old’s goalscoring prowess began to show towards the back-end of 2019, when he finished the season with 10 goals in his final 11 appearances, ending the season with 12 goals in 25 matches total. In his debut season in 2018, Harris scored three in 14 appearances.

Harris led the league with a 28.6% shot conversion rate off of 28 shots, which is better than any other player who scored a minimum of eight goals. Harris became the youngest player to hit 20 goals in league history with a goal in the 55th minute of SKC II’s 2-1 win over FC Tulsa in August.

With 19% of the vote, Harris beat out San Antonio FC’s Jose Gallegos and Sacramento Republic FC’s Hayden Sargis. This award was voted on by each team’s team technical staff and executives as well as league-wide media panel.

Harris joined the Academy ahead of the 2017-18 U.S. Soccer Developmental Academy season and went on to score 18 goals in 17 league appearances. Overall, Harris has scored 23 goals in 56 games at the USL level. Harris will likely see more time developing under head coach Paulo Nagamura, but he will be forced to join the crew of SKC players who join on loan game-by-game.

USL CHAMPIONSHIP YOUNG PLAYER OF THE YEAR

2011: Luke Mulholland, Wilmington Hammerheads FC

2012: Jose Cuevas, Charleston Battery

2013: Nate Robinson, Richmond Kickers

2014: John McCarthy, Rochester Rhinos

2015: Kharlton Belmar, Portland Timbers 2

2016: Brandon Allen, New York Red Bulls II

2017: Chris Wehan, Reno 1868 FC

2018: Efrain Alvarez, LA Galaxy II

2019: Cristian Parano, San Antonio FC