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Orange County SC 2018 Player Postmortem: Ami Pineda

Local product a squad player in his second season.

Pineda (left) celebrating with teammates and fans after a win.
Courtesy of Orange County SC.

One of just a handful of Orange County SC players in 2017 who came back for the 2018 season, midfielder Amirgy Pineda perfectly fit the club’s developing philosophy. A young local product, the 21-year-old had gotten a decent run in 2017 and seemed set to build on that.

While he played more of a holding midfield role under Logan Pause, it was a bit surprising that Pineda didn’t get too much of a run in 2018. Part of that appears to be due to an injury or injuries, and part of it was the successful midfield rattling off a first-place season. As a result, Pineda was frequently part of the 18 down the stretch, but his actual playing time was limited.

Pineda OCSC 2018 statistics

2018 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
2018 Games Played Games Started Minutes Goals Assists Shots SOG Yellow Cards Red Cards
USL Regular Season 5 2 220 1 0 1 1 1 0
U.S. Open Cup 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
USL Playoffs 1 0 7 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 6 2 227 1 0 1 1 1 0

The big highlight of his campaign was scoring his first goal as a professional, in a home rout over Tulsa Roughnecks in June.

The celebration, triumphantly holding his arms aloft and letting out a roar while on the ground before fully collapsing, was a genuine, and genuinely touching moment for the Santa Ana native.

One suspects this wasn’t the season Pineda hoped for coming in, but as a squad player, and still just 21, he’s got time to continue to grow his game, and with the roster churn that takes place every year, it’s certainly possible he could come back and find more playing time next season. We’ll have to see what the future holds for the local, who often got the biggest cheers on the team with friends and family rooting him on, but it was nice to see him grab that goal and contribute to Orange County SC’s best-ever season.

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