Last Saturday Real Monarchs SLC picked up its first win under the tenure of Head Coach Martín Vasquez with a dominant shut out showing over LA Galaxy II. At the anchor of the Monarchs defense was 18-year-old goalkeeper David Ochoa, who has turned heads since the start of the 2019 USL Championship season.
Three weeks into the regular season, Ochoa has already landed on the USL Team of the Week for two consecutive weeks and secured the honor of Save of the Week for his fingertip save against El Paso in week two.
“He’s been outstanding,” Vasquez said of Ochoa. “Outstanding in not only against El Paso but also in our game against Sacramento. For an 18-year-old senior in high school, to have performances like these shows a lot of maturity and composure.”
Ochoa proved his level of maturity and composure with his spectacular performances against Locomotive FC and Los Dos, putting in 12 saves across the two games to secure two consecutive clean sheets. The California native tops the league in clean sheets and is second in saves with 16 overall after week three. The work effort he has put in between the pipes has also made the Monarchs goal the most secure in the Western Conference in the early goings 2019, being the only Western Conference team to concede just one goal.
“I feel good. I feel confident in my game,” Ochoa said about his own work efforts. “I just want to keep going and keep getting more good performances and then hopefully get a bigger opportunity down the road.”
Bigger opportunities may not be far off for Ochoa, who has already made appearances for the U.S. Men’s National Team U-18 and U-20 sides. The young keeper helped lift the U-18 side to victory after making multiple penalty saves against Japan in the final of the 2018 Vaclav Jazek International Youth Tournament, securing the team it’s tournament win for the third time in six years.
“David Ochoa continues to make big steps in his development and continuing to show his maturity, his quality and his composure,” Vasquez continued.
Ochoa and the Monarchs will be looking to secure its third clean sheet of the season along with another three points on the road at Cashman Field against it’s I-15 rival Las Vegas Lights FC. The matchup is scheduled for an evening kickoff at 8:30 p.m. MT and can be seen live on ESPN+.