It is never easy to find positives in an 0-2 losing effort, but our Orlando City Lions showed spirit and intensity that should pay dividends as we head down the stretch.
Which Lions has the Stock Watch looked favorably upon?
Darwin Cerén - Having returned from international duties with El Salvador in the Gold Cup, Cerén established himself right back into his familiar role in the midfield, hitting three key passes to go with six accurate long balls in his first 90 back in purple.
As The Mane Land's Michael Citro noted in his player grades, Darwin was all over the pitch disrupting play and was pivotal offensively. It's no question his perpetually rising stock made former Lion Amobi Okugo more expendable than anticipated.
Sean St. Ledger - Just one week removed from dislocating his shoulder in the very same building, St. Leger trotted onto the pitch to the surprise of just about everybody in attendance. With the image of Sean grimacing on the pitch, clutching his shoulder still fresh in our minds, St. Ledger was a sound defensive presence to the tune of five clearances.
While his play wasn't necessarily outstanding, his toughness was. A fine showing that all of #LionNation can appreciate.
Adrian Heath - Yes, he was sent off. Yes, he earned it. Yes, we all would have likely been sent off far sooner than he, as Inchy did his best to keep his cool until he -- like the rest of us -- just couldn't take it any longer. His performance while leaving the pitch rivaled the awesomeness of Stan Van Gundy's old befuddlement at officiating. It's been a while since we had the fire that Stan Van Damme brought to the sidelines in Orlando. Seeing the manager as passionate as the fans is both fantastic and incredibly endearing to the city.
Cyle Larin - Kid Fantastic was tossed unceremoniously (and unjustly, in this Mane Lander's opinion) leaving Orlando City down a man for the better part of an hour. Rather ineffective before then, Larin managed just 13 touches, being dispossessed thrice and failing to find anything but space with an early cross.
Lewis Neal - Neal played smart -- perhaps too smart -- for his own good Saturday night. Completing 94% of your passes is fantastic, however, if none of them lead to anything, it can be argued that you're not really helping the cause.
The search for an effective attacking option on the right continues.
Whose stock rose and fell in your eyes on Saturday? Let us know in the comments and vote in our poll below!