Blake's eight save performance showcases his skill set

Andre Blake has been a major player for the Union all season. He provides a great chance for the team to win when he's in net, and adds a flair for the dramatic with his highlight reel saves. 

That was fully apparent against New York Red Bulls Sunday afternoon.

Blake made eight saves in the match, seven of which came in the first half. He was forced to weather numerous scoring chances from NYRB. However, the Union defense did a good job of mostly limiting those chances to outside of the 18-yard box. Still, Blake was forced to make as many saves in the match as his last two games combined. 

“He’s phenomenal," Richie Marquez said of Blake. "It’s always amazing to have someone like that behind you, he made some pretty tough saves. It’s great to have a player like that.”

Blake's eight saves was the second highest total he's posted in his career, and the first time he's made eight saves since his performance against FC Dallas on opening day in 2016. 

With his performance, Blake also registered his eighth shutout, continuing to establish a new career high in the category. It was his first clean sheet in five appearances for him, with his last shutout coming against New England Revolution on July 2. Clean sheets aren't an individual stat though, as the Union's last shutout came against Columbus Crew SC on July 26. 

"Yeah, his play speaks for itself," Head Coach Jim Curtin said. "He's a great goalkeeper. He's the Goalkeeper of the Year from last year and he's done a good job in key moments. But the guys in front of him also worked really hard, did a good job and broke up some plays and made it as easy as possible for Andre on the night."

Because of his great game, Blake was nominated for MLS Save of the Week, named to MLS's Team of the Week, and was named the ESPN Man of the Match and the IBX Live Fearless Man of the Match. To vote for Blake in MLS Save of the Week, click here

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