U14 DA Showcase Day 3 Highlights

U14 DA Showcase Day 3 Highlights
by Daniel Frank
June 17, 2014


The U14 U.S. Development Academy showcase wrapped up on Monday, here are some highlights.

Orlando City 1 – 0 New York Red Bulls

Orlando City and the New York Red Bulls both came into Monday’s showdown with 2-0 records this weekend. It was No. 10 Orlando City though that took advantage of its momentum, upsetting No. 1 New York in a 1-0 nail-biter.

The Orlando City offense was its biggest strength in the first two games and came out firing against New York. Bryce Willis game them their first scoring opportunity with a pass deep into the box to Landen Haig. Haig scored on a similar play against the Dallas Texans on Friday, but this time he whiffed.

Haig had another chance 11 minutes later when he got into the box with a give-and-go, but went too quickly and was called offside.

New York had its chances at well, at times putting on an offensive display resembling the Spanish national team, but couldn’t convert. Zach Ryan sent a slow cross just a few yards in front of the goal in the 20th minute, but it found no one. Ryan and Andrew Brunetti used several crisp passes in tight quarters to advance the ball down the left sideline and earned a free kick after a foul, but the kick was cleared by Justin Bauer, Orlando’s keeper.

Following a scoreless first half, but Orlando took the lead quickly in the second. Haig found Raul Aguilera on the left wing and after Aguilera dribbled into the box, he turned and hooked the ball just past the left post.

The Red Bulls threw all they had at Orlando in the final 11 minutes, creating four different scoring opportunities, but only one resulted in a shot on goal and Bauer safely punched it out of the box.

Orlando struggled with their back line all weekend, but once against made up for their defensive shortcomings with strong offensive play and ball control. This time the result was a win over the top-ranked team and a perfect 3-0 record for the weekend.


Los Angeles Galaxy 4 – 2 Toronto FC


It looked like it would be a route for the Galaxy, who scored five minutes in and tacked on three more goals before Toronto could get on the board. Toronto answered with a pair of goals late in the second half to keep the score respectable and even cast some doubt, if only for a few moments, about the outcome of the match. Los Angeles settled down though and came away with the 4-2 win.

Forward Noah Harrison drew first blood after challenging the Toronto keeper for a poorly played ball. He deflected the goalie’s attempt to clear, corralled the rebound and easily knocked it in to the empty net from 15 yards out. The play might have seemed like an unlucky break for Toronto, but it was the first example of the Galaxy forwards ability to make a play.

Leading 2-0 in extra time of the first half, Jordan Aldama made one of the saves of the day when Toronto’s Josh Moreira got into the box and took a straight-on shot from eight yards out. Aldama was able to deflect the ball over the cross bar and preserve the 2-0 lead.

Toronto made another play to get in the board right out of the gates in the second half. Rocco Romeo delivered a ball to OlaKunle Dadaluke near the left sideline. Dadaluke sent in a rolling cross but it only found a shanked shot.

The Galaxy took the rebound and ran. Salvador Segura got past his defender and got a shot on goal, but the keeper deflected it out for a corner kick. Tristan Weber took the corner from the right side and sent in a perfect ball to the far post where Leonardo Zulli had an easy header for a  3-0 lead and his second goal of the match.

Just 12 minutes later in the 59th minute, Zulli found  Harrison at the top of the 18-yard box. Harrison dribbled along the line until he found an opening and the delivered the ball into the left side of the net for his second goal and a 4-0 lead.

Leading 4-0 in the 70th minute, Galaxy head coach Michael Munoz subbed out his keeper. Just six minutes later, Toronto forward Ayo Akinola struck. A hestitation move froze the defender and Akinola got by for an easy look in the right side of the net. Akinola scored against just 90 seconds later. He beat two defenders at midfield, dribbled to the 18-yard box and used the same hesitation move to set up a clear look at the goal.

The Galaxy fended off any more attacks from Toronto and came away the win and a 2-1 record for the weekend.


Carolina Elite Soccer Academy 2 – 1 FC Bolts Celtic

Facing down a 1-0 deficit late in the second half, Carolina responded with two goals in the final 10 minutes and extra time to pull out an improbably win in the final round of matches of the weekend.

Carolina played a high back line all game, which caused countless offside calls for the Bolts and kept them out of rhythm.

Andrew Halloran on the other hand, found quite a bit of success running the left sideline and either crossing the ball into the box or dribbling in himself. While the threat persisted, he wasn’t able to create an legitimate scoring chances and the first half ended in a scoreless tie.

Julio Fulcar scored for the Bolts in the 54th minute and the Bolts held their lead until the 67th minute.

Plagued by offside calls, and visibly frustrating by the officiating, Carolina defender Ethan Dutka shook it off and ran the length of the right sideline, then found Halloran near the far post on his cross for a header and the equalizing goal.

The Carolina offense started to find some rhythm and execute more successful runs, but went into extra time still tied.

Several of the Bolts players seemed worn out and it showed when they  made pass back to the goalie too casually. Dutka chased down the ball and challenged the goalie when he tried to clear, managing a deflection. He beat the keeper to the rebound and found an open net for the game winning goal in extra time.


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