Wednesday, November 23, 2011

 Piatczyc Selected for Showcase

Sporting Kansas City Junior Joey Piatczyc was selected as one of 78 developmental players to compete in the 2011 Winter Showcase's Academy Select Teams in Sarasota, Fla. The 78 players will be divided into four select teams by U.S. Soccer technical staff. The showcase will consist of two games for each team to be played at the Premier Sports Complex on December 3, 2011.

Earlier this year, Piatczyc made his debut for Sporting Kansas City in a Reserve League victory over Colorado Rapids. Piatczyc,who was born in 1996, is the youngest player to enter a Reserve match for Sporting Kansas City this season.

 U16's and U18's USSDA Home Opener

Sporting Kansas City Juniors under-18s and under-16s competed in their home openers earlier this month against the Dallas Texans. The matches took place at Swope Park Training Center on Friday, Nov. 18.

The first game of the double header began at 4:30 p.m. and featured Sporting Kansas City U-18s versus a Texans side that had 1-3-4 record leading up to the match. The Texans came away with a road win, the victory marking their second of the season. The lone goal of the match belonged to Caleb Richardson in the 42nd minute.

Head Coach of Sporting Kansas City U-18s, Paul Rideout, said, “ I was delighted with the way we possessed the ball from back to front, but disappointed we did not turn it into goals”.

The U-16s kicked off at 7 p.m. against an undefeated Texans team. The match ended in a 1-1 draw. Sporting Kansas City’s Debray Holliman notched the first goal of the game right before half time. The Texan’s Brandon Aubrey found the equalizer at the 60th minute mark.

The two academy teams will resume play this weekend as Sporting Kansas City head to Sarasota, Florida to face D.C. United, Baltimore Bays and Oakwood Soccer Club at the 2011 Winter Showcase at the Premier Sports Campus.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

 Juniors Pay Visit to LIVESTRONG Headquarters

Sporting Kansas City's two Development Academy teams played their first games of the 2011 season on the road last weekend but came back to KC with more than just one win a piece. The Juniors had the opportunity to take a tour of LIVESTRONG Headquarters located in Austin, Texas and as you could imagine, LIVESTRONG HQ is packed with inspirational stories and keepsakes.

Upon entering the building, the Juniors noticed that all of the rooms featured see through walls to indicate that the organization is transparent in efforts to create trust, participation, and informed decision making.

The next notable display was a yellow motorcycle, which was made for Lance by the American Chopper guys, and revealed on The Tonight Show. The idea was to generate exposure for the LIVESTRONG Foundation and that is exactly what it did. Lance then auctioned the bike to raise money for his cause and the highest bidder donated their new prize back to the foundation, which is now on display at the LIVESTRONG Headquarters. The U16 Sporting Kansas City Juniors pose with the Orange County Choppers contribution in the fight against Cancer.

The headquarters of course placed emphasis on the number seven to symbolize Lance Armstrong's status as 7-time Tour de France winner by the seven core values they created to represent their foundation.

The VALUES include:
1) We can Change the way the world fights cancer.
2) We do this by serving you.
3) We know we cant do it alone.
4) We call for action in a global community.
5) We voraciously pursue excellence.
6) We dare to hope and act on it.
7) We honor the fight – your fight.

Another reference to the number seven includes a piece of art that connects seven fully functioning bicycles together with just a few screws. Theoretically the bicycles could be taken apart and available for use. However, when connected serves as the centerpiece of the office and represents different stages of Armstrong's life. Each bicycle has four symbols. The symbols create a story line. A few examples include a skull to represent chemicals and the diagnosis of cancer and a cross to represent the many hours spent at the hospital. Lungs to stand for the good health and endurance Lance needs for competition.

Other notable items around the office include a display of the seven jerseys worn during Armstrong's seven tour victories, a paddle board which reads "damthatcancer" donated from a race, hammocks, a yoga room, an entire office for the 35 interns they have each semester, and of course Mike Savage's painting of LIVESTRONG Sporting Park beautifully hanging from the cubicle of a staff member. To conclude, the boys had the opportunity to meet Doug Ulman, President and CEO of The Lance Armstrong Foundation (LIVESTRONG).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

 SKC Juniors in College Ranks

Last week, we took a look at the high school seasons for active U16 and U18 SKC Juniors players. Today, we catch our readers up on the collegiate seasons that several former Sporting Kansas City Juniors are now enjoying...

Division 1:
The Oral Roberts Golden Eagles concluded the season with a 13-6-1 overall record after falling 2-1 to Western Illinois in the championship of the Summit League. Juniors products Tom Adams and Paul Oliver helped propel ORU to the conference finals, appearing in 14 and 16 games respectively and each tallying six points on the year. Oliver gave ORU the 1-0 lead in the 33rd minute of the championship match this past weekend, but it wasn’t enough to earn the victory.

Christian Duke and San Diego University lost their season finale to St. Mary’s who went on to win the West Coast Conference. Duke started 17 games this season, notching three assists on the year to help SDU earn a .500 record of 9-9-1.

Wright State’s 1-0 victory on November 5th ended Butler’s season with a 7-8-3 record. However, Sporting Kansas City Juniors alumni Brandon Fricke earned individual honors. The redshirt freshman defender started 15 of the 16 games he appeared in for the Bulldogs this year and earned Academic All-District recognition. This selection deems Fricke eligible for the 2011 Capital One Academic All-America Team.

Asher Herbet played 16 games this year for Long Island University who ended their season on November 5th with a 3-0 loss on Senior Day to Fairleigh Dickinson.

Four Sporting Kansas City Juniors alumni were able to impact the University of Missouri Kansas City this fall. Konnor Knoll, Jordan Rideout, and Jimmy Simon each played in 17 games this year, while Michael Oakley made 16 appearances. Rideout started each of the 17 games he played in while Oakley started in each of the 16 games he played. Rideout tallied a team leading seven goals and 14 points this season and earned Newcomer of the Year and first-team all-conference honors. Oakley also earned a spot on the All-Newcomer Team after being the rock of the UMKC defense all season long. Knoll also tallied a game-winning goal and an assist on the season.

St. Louis Billikens dropped their season finale 2-1 in double overtime against Charlotte for their third OT loss this season. Sporting Kansas City Junior Raymond Lee started 17 games for the Billikens and totaled nine points this year with four goals and one assist.

Will Witherspoon played 18 games this year for Virginia Tech, who ended their season with a 1-0 loss to NC State in the ACC Tournament on November 7th.

Ohio State posted a 10-7-2 overall record, and came in second among Big Ten schools this fall. But Marques Mayoras and the Buckeyes fell to #7 seed Penn State in the quarterfinal round of the Big Ten Tournament in their final contest of 2011. Mayoras appeared in four matches during his freshman campaign.

Peter O’Neill started 20 games for Northwestern clocking 1,792 minutes to date for his senior season. O’Neill helped the Wildcats earn an 11-4-5 record, scoring one goal and adding five assists this season. NU finished atop the Big Ten at the conclusion of league play and won the Big Ten Tournament Title by beating Penn State in a come from behind 2-1 victory in the tournament finals. O’Neill scored the game-tying goal for Northwestern on a penalty kick. Northwestern will now face defending College Cup champions Akron in the first round of the NCAA tournament on Friday, November 17th.

Division 2:
Eric Hymer appeared in 12 games for Fort Hays State University, which finished their season with an 11-5-2 record. The season was the first for FHSU in school history and was highlighted by a ten-game unbeaten streak.

Eric Moore, Taylor Vinnage, Kyle Miller, and the rest of the Rockhurst squad boast a 17-2-2 overall record. Miller has started each of the 19 games so far for the Hawks, scoring one-goal and adding two assists. The Hawks are set to play in the Division II NCAA Tournament Quarterfinals on November 19th in Millersville, Pa.

Baker University and Leath Hamil host Oklahoma Wesleyan in the NAIA Men’s Soccer National Championship opening round on November 19th. Baker is 17-1-1 thus far with Hamil appearing in 18 of their 19 games this season.

Friday, November 11, 2011

 Juniors Are Back In Action

The under-16 and under-18 Sporting Kansas City Juniors resume play this weekend for the first time since dispersing to participate in their respective high school seasons. The juniors will head to Texas to play their opening matches of the season on the road.

Both teams will face Lonestar SC Academy on Saturday in Austin and then travel to San Antonio to play Classics Elite on Sunday. The first match on Saturday will kick off at 10:00 a.m.

Lonestar SC under-16’s have played seven games on the season, acquiring a 3-2-2 record to date, and hover in the middle third of the Conference. Lonestar SC under-18’s have also competed in seven games this far, attaining a 4-2-1 record, sitting in third place in the Central Conference with 13 points.

Classics Elite, also from the Central Conference have not been as fortunate as their under-16 team has yet to secure a win, while their under-18 squad has earned just three points from their last seven contests.

 High School Soccer Round-Up

As Sporting Kansas City Juniors players wrap up their respective seasons with their high school teams and re-join the academy, we take a look at some of their recent prep achievements.

In Kansas...

In Missouri...
  • Jacole Turner and Lee's Summit North fell in overtime to Alec Van Wormer and Lee's Summit West on Tuesday in Class 3 sectionals. LSW will next face Park Hill in the Missouri state quarterfinals on Saturday.
  • Luke Stanley, Cole Stevenson, Daniel Hare, Derek Schrick and Matt Bernard all represented Rockhurst this year. The Hawklets fell 2-1 in OT to Lee's Summit West in the district final.
  • Here's video from a goal by Hare last month...
  • Darby Cronin, Joey Piatczyc, Dalton Souder, Erik Palmer-Brown and Jake Wood all featured for Lee's Summit this season, as the Tigers fell in 20T to Lee's Summit West in the district semifinals.
  • Blue Spring's Julian Ramirez scored in their regular season finale victory over cross-town rivals Blue Springs South.
  • Shane Woods record-setting season with 50+ goals for Kearney ended in a 2-1 loss to Liberty in the district championship. Woods scored in OT to beat Billy Vigil and Fort Osage in the district semifinals. Here's the video:

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

 Goals by the Bunches

The Under-13 and Under-14 Sporting Kansas City Juniors demonstrated the desire to go to goal in their season finales in the National Premier League's Great Lakes division on Saturday as each team tallied five goals on the weekend.

The U14 Sporting KC Juniors earned their 5-0 result against a very good Blue Valley Soccer Club team. The win was a complete team effort with five different players notching goals. With the win and goals from Dakota Karns, Paul Whitner, Jacob Weaver, Dorian Hernandez and Logan Wilson, the U14's are back in striking distance for the league title and playoffs come this spring. The victory also marked the return of a number of injured players and the strong performance from the healthy squad will hopefully indicate what is yet to come for the boys.

The U13's also played their final game of the NPL Fall season against BVSC. Despite a sluggish start, the U13 Sporting KC team earned a 5-1 victory as result of a hard-fought battle. Allowing only their second goal of the season in Saturday’s match, the defense had a strong performance. Alex Kaddah anchored the backline from the center back position while Maxwell Harrington and Tanner Richardson pushed forward from their outside back positions, making great runs up the flanks. The win moves the U13 Sporting Juniors to 5-0-0 on the season, with 15 points and the team sits in first place going into the spring season.

Check out the video below to view the highlights from Sporting Kansas City Juniors U13 match against BVSC...