July 20, 2012
DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY FINALS
Scott Gallagher rolls over Crew, PA Classics stay alive
PA CLASSICS 2, DC UNITED 1
HOUSTON – PA Classics needed a win to stay in the hunt for the Development Academy U-15/16 championship and second-half substitute Andrew Mannon delivered when it mattered most, finishing a counterattack in the 71st minute for a 2-1 victory against D.C. United on Thursday night at the Houston Amateur Sports Park.
Off of a D.C. United corner kick, PA Classics sprung the counterattack quickly up the middle of the field. A ball played up the right flank ran over the touchline after deflecting off of a D.C. player and the awareness of midfielder Drew Mahoney and Mannon helped PA Classics capitalize on the attack.
Mahoney rapidly scooped up the ball and threw it in to Mannon, unmarked and making a run into the box. The ball bounced up and off of a D.C. United defender and fell to Mannon who buried the game-winner.
Connor Maloney gave the Pennsylvania side a 1-0 lead after just seven minutes when D.C. United goalkeeper Carlos Canas spilled a long cross into the box. Maloney was there for the rebound as PA Classics got off to a quick start.
The lead did not last long, however, as D.C. United midfielder Ian Harkes chested down a long pass near the top of the box and served up a perfect ball for Jorge Calix to rifle into the back of the net in the 11th minute.
PA Classics squares off against Crew Soccer Academy Wolves on Saturday at 9 p.m. CT, while St. Louis Scott Gallagher plays D.C. United also at 9 p.m. CT.
NEW YORK RED BULLS 1, CHICAGO FIRE 0
HOUSTON – Led by captain Adam Najem’s second-half goal, the New York Red Bulls defeated the Chicago Fire 1-0 on Thursday in both teams’ second match of Group 1 play at the Houston Amateur Sports Park.
With the victory, New York moves to 2-0-0 and six points in the group. The Fire and Pateadores, which defeated Charlotte Soccer Academy 3-1 on Thursday, have three points apiece and are still in the hunt. With a draw or a victory against Charlotte Soccer Academy on Saturday, New York would clinch a spot in the championship game on Monday, July 23, at BBVA Compass Stadium.
The contest between two strong offensive sides became a defensive grind. In fact, New York’s lone goal in the 48th minute was the team’s first shot on goal.
After Alex Muyl worked the ball from the right to Amando Moreno, he dished to Najem on the left and fired a shot toward the right side of the frame. The ball hit the right post and crossed the goal line for a 1-0 lead that held up for the remainder of the match.
The Red Bulls take on Charlotte Soccer Academy at 8 p.m. CT on Saturday, July 21, while the Fire faces Pateadores at 8 p.m. Saturday.
ST. LOUIS SCOTT GALLAGHER MISSOURI 4, CREW SOCCER ACADEMY WOLVES 1
HOUSTON – St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri exploded for three unanswered goals in the second half to win 4-1 against Crew Soccer Academy Wolves on Thursday night at the Houston Amateur Sports Complex.
With the victory, SLSG have collected the full six points from two matches and hold a commanding lead in Group 2 heading into the final matchday.
A win or a draw would guarantee a place in the championship match. PA Classics are their closest competitors and would need a victory, an SLSG loss plus make up an eight-goal gap in goal differential in order to surpass the group leaders.
After the teams traded goals in the first half, Tommy Barlow scored in the 44th minute to break the deadlock and then added another five minutes later to put the game out of reach.
Barlow’s point-blank header forced a reaction save from Robbie Beckwell in the 12th minute, the striker proving to be a menace to the CSA defense throughout the encounter.
CSA Wolves striker Ahinga Selemani Selemani put together some nice solo work near the corner of the area to free up space, then unleashed a low laser from 25 yards out that ripped into far side netting.
In the final minute of the first half, SLSG snatched back the momentum with a fine finish from Nick Jones. The attacker got on the end of a great ball over the top of the Wolves backline and stayed ahead of his pursuing marker before shooting low and hard past Beckwell.
SLSG carried the spark from the goal into the second half, and after four minutes they had the game-winner up on the scoreboard. The sequence began with Mark Segbers racing down the left flank and driving toward goal. He dished back inside the box and the ball caromed off two Wolves defenders before falling to the feet of Barlow who made no mistake from that distance.
The St. Louis outfit kicked in another gear and the third goal seemed only a matter of time. Barlow once again benefitted from the work of his teammates. After a composed series of passes produced a change in the point of attack, Barlow was isolated on the right side. Having had a similar look moments before, he capitalized on the opportunity with a well-driven strike to put SLSG up a pair.
Not content to relax, they gave no breathing space for CSA Wolves to mount a comeback effort. Wolves found a burst of energy in the final 10 minutes, which also left them exposed, and the final goal came when Segbers earned space by the byline and delivered a cross that struck a defender in the area and cruelly crossed the goal line.
PATEADORES 3, CHARLOTTE SOCCER ACADEMY 1
HOUSTON – Pateadores stormed back from a goal deficit to win 3-1 against Charlotte Soccer Academy at the Houston Amateur Sports Park in Group 1 play of the U-15/16 age group of the 2012 Development Academy Finals Week. Brian Pacheco netted a hat trick to account for all three goals.
Pateadores drew level with the Chicago Fire on points (three) after the win. The two teams will face each other in the third group game with the hope of catching the New York Red Bulls on six points, who will face Charlotte in their conclusion to group play.
Charlotte struck first in the 33rd minute through Tomas Hilliard-Arce and looked to be taking the lead into halftime before Pacheco struck for his first to level the contest at 1-1 just before the whistle.
The Pateadores striker grabbed his second just before the hour mark to give his side the lead, and iced the game three minutes into injury time to complete the hat trick.