An update on D.C.'s loanees plus a look at Daniel Woolard's recent offensive explosion
After seeing his defensive unit give up five goals in D.C.'s mid-week defeat at San Jose, Daniel Woolard wasn't very keen on discussing his individual offensive exploits late Wednesday night.
"We weren't very good defensively tonight and that hurt us," Woolard answered matter-of-factly via telephone from the visitors’ locker room at Buck Shaw Stadium.
After seeing his defensive unit give up fivegoals in D.C.'s mid-week defeat at San Jose, Daniel Woolard wasn't very keen ondiscussing his individual offensive exploits late Wednesday night.
"We weren't very good defensively tonightand that hurt us," Woolard answered matter-of-factly via telephone fromthe visitors’ locker room at Buck Shaw Stadium.
While it may be hard to disagree with Woolard'sassessment, it's also worth noting the 28-year-old's impact on an attack thathas now scored ten goals in the club's last three matches. When he earned a spot in United'sstarting eleven last year, most assumed Woolard's lockdown defending would comeat the expense of any offensive contributions from the left back spot. But just days after notching two assistsagainst Houston, Woolard scored his first goal of 2012 on a beautiful divingheader in the 64th minute.
"With all the guys that we have, any extraman getting forward is going to help score goals," noted Woolard of hisincreased offensive output. "We have so many guys that teams have to key on, it gives otherplayers an opportunity to get open more and I think that is what has happenedwith me."
Before D.C. United even took the field at BuckShaw, one member of the Black-and-Red had already put in his day's work. On loan with the Ft. LauderdaleStrikers of the NASL, Conor Shanosky played the full ninety minutes in a 3-3draw with the Carolina Railhawks earlier Wednesday night.
"To be able to play in competitive matchesis something that I've been missing a lot," said the 20-year-old UnitedAcademy product that has yet to make a first-team appearance for theBlack-and-Red. "It's hugereally and it has been good for my development. You can't really replicate a first team match with stuff onthe line and the overall competition."
In addition to earning meaningful minutes,Shanosky is displaying noteworthy versatility during his loan spell. While serving mostly as a centralmidfield, the Potomac Falls High School product was dropped into the center ofdefense when a red card forced Strikers' coach Daryl Shore to shuffle his backline. So far this season, Shanoskyhas played all but 23 minutes for a Ft. Lauderdale side that sits behind onlyPuerto Rico in the NASL standings.
Another United loanee is making quite thereturn to the club where he spent most of 2011. Andrew Dykstra, now on his second loan spell of the season with the Charleston Battery, picked up USL PRO Goalkeeper of the Week honors forhis four-save performance in a 1-0 win over the Pittsburgh Riverhounds.
"As a goalkeeper, just getting game timeis important for our development and understanding of what we see and how weread the game," said Dykstra of his stint in the third division. "The games are really kind of thething that I'm taking advantage of by being here."
After signing with D.C. this preseason, Dykstra credited his time 2011 Charleston stint with giving him theconfidence necessary to earn a second chance in MLS. The 26-year-old goalkeeper, who is set to return to Unitedon May 20, has recorded a pair of shutouts and a 2-1 record since joining theBattery earlier this year.