Going six straight matches without a loss, no other club in USL League One is hotter than the Chattanooga Red Wolves.
After averaging one goal per game through its first eight matches, Chattanooga made a lineup change that has turned up the heat on opposing defenses.
Ami Pineda has produced in a key role. Over the past four matches the starting attacking midfielder has created 10 chances, assisted three goals and scored one himself.
"At my position you have to be the playmaker," said Pineda, who has made two of the league's past three teams of the week. "I have to take more risks than most, whether it be sending a long pass ahead or across the field. You have to know what your forwards can do and where everyone is going to be."
Pineda has completed a solid 68% of his long passes this season, and he has converted 87% of his passes altogether in the past six games. Of those the third-place Red Wolves (6-4-4) have won four and tied twice.
In a sturdy midfield that also includes Ualefi and Conor Doyle, ball movement has been crisper and provided more attacking chances for Steven Beattie and company up front.
"It took us a while to adjust, but we are very close-knit now," Pineda said. "Guys all around the field communicate more and really work well together and for each other. We have all been playing off one another's strengths."
Unbeaten at David Stanton Field in seven matches this season, Chattanooga is in a tough week of road games and short rest.
After breaking ground Tuesday morning on their future stomping grounds in East Ridge, the Red Wolves hit the road. They visit Orlando City B (3-9-3) tonight at 7:30 and take on Forward Madison FC in Wisconsin at 8 p.m. EDT Saturday.
"We want to make history and set the bar high for this club," Pineda said. "You want to be on a team where you know what they are, what they are about and what soccer means to them. The future is bright, and who knows, maybe we can win a championship."
Contact Patrick MacCoon at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @PMacCoon.