Monday, November 15, 2010

 Start of US Soccer Development Academy

Paul Rideout and the U18's take the field on Saturday

One season ends, another begins. The U16's and U18's began practicing less than two weeks ago following the completion of their high school seasons, and they already have two games to report on.

The two squads were in Dallas this weekend as they opened their 2010-11 US Soccer Development Academy schedule against two of the top teams in Texas: FC Dallas and Andromeda. On Saturday, the Juniors faced fellow MLS academy foes FC Dallas who had the advantage of starting their season two months ago, having already played six games.

U18's were back in action against Andromeda on Sunday

The U18's lost 3-1 in a competitive contest played in the morning's crisp, windy conditions. Despite falling behind 2-0 at halftime, the Wizards fought back to cut the lead in half on a goal from Jordan Rideout in the 82nd minute and came close to tying it up with a shot from Lucas Throckmorton in the 88th minute that forced a solid save by the FCD goalkeeper.

U16's warming up prior to their win on Sunday

The U16's earned a 1-1 draw in their match, taking an early lead on an opportunistic strike from Tarlue Doe in the 12th minute. David Leichty started the scoring sequence with a shot from distance and Doe was well-positioned to power in the rebound from close range. Wizards goalkeeper Evan Wright made two great saves to protect the 1-0 lead but FCD came back to salvage a point with an equalizer in the 59th minute.

Sunday saw the two teams take the tollway to Plano, where Andromeda awaited. The U18's suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat but showed resilience and heart in playing down a man in the second half, continuing to create chances up until the final whistle. The U16's were 2-1 winners, scoring twice in the second half to complete a convincing comeback. Nate Opperman tied it at 1-1 with a perfectly placed shot on a breakaway and Eric DeJulio got the game winner, heading home a free kick taken by Leichty.

Jon Parry and the U16's went unbeaten on the weekend

The U16's unbeaten start to the season has them in an early tie with Real Colorado for first place in the Frontier Division of the Central Conference. Both teams will return to Texas next weekend to face Solar on Saturday and the Dallas Texans on Sunday, as they continue the 21-game schedule in the 2010-11 season.

While we have the chance, we also want to wish best of luck to KCW Juniors Daniel Hare, Derek Schrick, Cole Stevenson and Luke Stanley who will be playing for Rockhurst in the Missouri Class 3 state semifinals on Friday in St. Louis. Rockhurst advanced on penalty kicks over Park Hill on Saturday, with the Juniors own Ray Lee recording a goal and an assist for the Trojans.