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U15s advance to Concacaf semifinals

Article Written by J.R. Eskilson
Published: August 8, 2019

The U.S. U15 Boys National Team advanced to the semifinals of the 2019 Concacaf U15 Championship on Thursday with a 2-0 win over Costa Rica in the quarterfinal round. Sporting Kansas City Academy forward Osvaldo Cisneros scored both goals. De Anza Force goalkeeper Damian Alguera recorded the shutout in goal. 

USA improved to 4-0 at the event, and has yet to concede a goal over the four games. 

Cisneros nabbed the opener in the 12th minute. Costa Rica had the majority of the possession in the early stage of the game. When USA gained a spell of possession, they were attempting to slow build out of the back. Midfielder Rokas Pukstas’ pass was deflected perfectly for Cisneros who raced past the flat back four and beat the keeper for the opening tally. 

USA went into the break with the 1-0 lead, but Alguera was tested with a number of saves before the break. 

The start of the second half was a similar story with Costa Rica putting pressure on USA in hopes of an equalizer. Cisneros turned those dreams into a nightmare when he doubled the lead for USA in the 47th minute. Allan Rodriguez won the ball back for USA in the center of the field and found Pukstas immediately. Pukstas turned to face goal and played an exquisite pass to put substitute Rafael Jauregui in behind the defense on the left channel. Jauregui’s high cross hit the fingertips of Costa Rica goalkeeper Abraham Madriz. Cisneros was there to put in the rebound for his second goal of the game. 

Following the second goal, USA comfortably saw through the final 23 minutes of the contest and nearly added another tally to the scoreboard late. Substitute Aethan Yohannes’ volley went just wide of the post on a chance in the final five minutes. 

USA advances to take on Portugal in the semifinal on Saturday. Canada takes on Slovenia in the other semifinal. The final is on Sunday. 

USA U15 BNT Starting XI vs Costa Rica: Damian Alguera; Devan Tanton, Antonio Leone, Angel Martinez, Armando Avila; Allan Rodriguez (C), Rokas Pukstas, Victor Valdez; Evan Rotundo, Osvaldo Cisneros, Federico Oliva

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