The Real Salt Lake-AZ Development Academy finally kicked off their season October 2nd and 3rd at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California where they played Major League Soccer’s Los Angeles Galaxy and Chivas USA.
On Saturday the U18’s started off their academy debut by tying the Galaxy. Casa Grande’s Ricardo Velasco got both goals for RSL-AZ. It was a hard fought game where both teams looked to press for the winner and in the end the result was fair.
The U16’s opened up their schedule with a 4-0 loss to a mature Galaxy group. The U16’s never really caught the pace of the game and the physical nature that the Galaxy players brought to the table. However their response the next day was exactly what the coaching staff was looking for.
Against Chivas USA the U16’s despite going down a goal early responded like a wild fire and scored four unanswered goals. Big Ben “Fritz” Spencer led the charge by notching 4 classy goals as RSL crushed the Goats 7-3. Deservedly so Ben Spencer was named the Academy Player of the Week.
The U18’s in a very entertaining soccer game, where both teams looked to keep the ball on the floor and try to play the right way battled it out to a 1-1 score line. Another fair result for two teams that will do well in the league as they progress.
This past weekend the RSL-AZ group travelled to beautiful La Jolla where they faced the two most powerful clubs in San Diego, Nomads and Surf.
The U18’s building off two good performances in LA came out and demolished the Nomads 4-0. It was a foreshadow of what was to come the rest of the weekend for the U18s.
The U16’s looking for a little consistency struggled in the first half against the Nomads as they went down 1-0 at halftime. In a much inspired second half performance the 16’s looked to find the equaliser but unfortunately it never came. In the dying minutes of the game the Nomads caught RSL on the break and finished the game off with a second goal, winning 2-0.
The following day the two teams met up against Surf at the La Jolla Polo Grounds. The U18’s building off yesterdays win deservedly beat Surf 2-0 in a very comfortable performance. Their weekend total was 6 goals for and 0 goals against showing a collective team effort from front to back. The team is brimming with confidence at the moment and now will look forward to 3 very good performances in the Academy Showcase December 3-7 at Reach 11 in Phoenix.
The U16’s responding from a tough loss came out with enthusiasm and were looking to make amends. The team showed composure and were moving the ball very well. Dylan Kelly got two goals on the day and the boys ran away with a strong 2-1 win.
RSL-AZ left San Diego with 9 out of 12 possible points and left a statement to the rest of the country that RSL-AZ is on the map.
The two groups will take a few days off and then will get back at it as they begin their preparations for the Development Academy Showcase in Phoenix. The schedule for that event will be published later this week.