EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – When you’re the hottest team in the league, people begin to take notice. As is the case for El Paso Locomotive FC who is unbeaten in their last eight matches, winning four straight to take a commanding nine-point lead in the USL Championship Western Conference Mountain Division standings.
As a result, the league announced on Wednesday that Locomotive head coach Mark Lowry has been named the USL Championship Coach of the Month following a six-game unbeaten month of July. This is Lowry’s first time receiving the honor.
“It’s a credit to the guys and how they’ve worked and the sustained success they’ve had,” Lowry said. “The staff – Matt [Williams], Dom [Casciato], JC [Garzon], Saul [Soto], Ricardo [Ruiz], Nate [Soto] – those guys make my job a lot easier on a daily basis. It’s a great staff we’ve put together and a great group of players. We continue to do well, which is a credit to them and the club.”
El Paso is not only in first place in their division, they are the top team in the entire league at 11-1-4 (37 points). The club claimed five wins and one draw through July. Lowry, who is in his third season as the head coach, led the Los Locos to three straight wins during the month, starting on July 3 as the Sun City club downed New Mexico United and Las Vegas Lights at home, 2-1 and 1-0 respectively. They also claimed all three points on the road in Utah with a 3-1 win over Real Monarchs, while taking home a point in a scoreless draw at New Mexico United.
“It feels good to be at the top at the halfway point. We obviously want to be at the top and stay there,” Lowry said. “We want to get the top of the Mountain Division and the overall standings. The hard part is staying there though. This has been a continued effort from Day One to get to where we are now. Two and half years of preparation, of work on the field every single day, sticking to the process, believing in what we do. Now we have to stay there but I think we have a squad of players that are resilient. They can manage tough moments and tough schedules like we’ve had the last couple of weeks. These guys give us a great chance of being successful this season.”
Lowry received 52 percent of the vote to take home the third monthly award of the season. Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC’s Bob Lilley finished in second with 18 percent of the vote. The award is voted upon by the USL Championship National Media Panel and the USL Championship Technical Committee, with each group responsible for 50 percent of the overall vote.
Locomotive will look to keep their unbeaten streaks alive on the road this week against New Mexico United. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. MT at Isotopes Park. The match will stream live on ESPN+.