MESA, Ariz. – Real Salt Lake-Arizona Elite U-18 asserted themselves at the top of the Arizona State League table while RSL-AZ Elite U-16 notched their first win of the AZSL season in the weekend’s slate of games.
Real Salt Lake-Arizona Elite U-16 1-0 United Latinos
After an opening weekend loss to Phoenix Premier FC, RSL-AZ Elite U-16 looked to get their first three points of the season at Quail Run Sports Complex against United Latinos.
Isaac Diaz challenged the United goal on multiple occasions in the first half, but he failed to convert and give the Claret-and-Cobalt the lead.
On the other end of the pitch Gage Rogers was solid in goal, making a key diving save early in the half and stopping a one-on-one late to preserve the 0-0 score going into half time.
Five minutes into the second half, Kyle Hellmann provided service to Moises Durazo, who finished past the keeper to open the scoring for RSL-AZ and take a 1-0 lead.
In the 69th minute, Jarrett Shrum’s shot from 18 yards out rattled off the crossbar, nearly doubling the lead with just over ten minutes left to play.
RSL-AZ Elite U-16 held on for the 1-0 win to take the three points and begin their climb up the Arizona State League table.
Real Salt Lake-Arizona Elite U-18 3-0 CCV Stars
Looking to continue their perfect start to the season against CCV Stars, RSL-AZ came out flying in Saturday’s second game.
In the 17th minute, RSL-AZ won the ball on the high press, quickly working it up to Martin Lopez who sped past the opposing defender and scored to open up a lead in the first half.
Martin Lopez struck another dangerous shot at the half hour mark, leaving a rebound for Judah Rashirai to pounce on to double the RSL-AZ lead before half time.
In the 52nd minute, Rashirai played a terrific through ball to Patrick Ring, who ran onto the pass and slotted it to the far post to open up a 3-0 lead for the Claret-and-Cobalt.
Ring’s finish capped off the scoring in the 3-0 win, placing RSL-AZ Elite U-18 firmly at the top of the U-18 table with three wins through three games played.
Real Salt Lake-Arizona Elite U-17 3-5 AZ Arsenal SC
The 17s went into Sunday’s game full of confidence after their dominant 7-0 win over Legacy in the opening weekend of State League play, but Arsenal had a different narrative in mind.
In a mostly uneventful first half, AZ Arsenal took a 1-0 lead in the 27th minute despite stronger play coming from the Claret-and-Cobalt.
The second half was a completely different story, as AZ Arsenal doubled their lead only two minutes in, streaking downfield on the counter against an overwhelmed RSL-AZ defense.
Moments later, Mathias Baboun got RSL-AZ on the board, receiving the ball deep in Arsenal territory and poking the ball to the far post to bring the deficit within one.
On a counter starting with their keeper, AZ Arsenal burned through the RSL defense once again, getting in behind and scoring to reclaim their two-goal lead.
In the 71st minute, Jesus “Chuy” Garcia ran down a lobbed pass from midfield, cutting onto his right foot from outside the 18 and scoring at the far post to bring the AZ Arsenal lead down to 3-2.
Less than a minute after the restart, AZ Arsenal scored again to extend the lead to 4-2. Arsenal then sealed the result in the 83rd minute, hitting on the counter to net their fifth goal of the match.
Mikey Lanzetta drew a penalty and scored a consolation goal in the 90th minute to bring the score to 5-3 just before the final whistle as RSL-AZ Elite U-17 suffered a disappointing loss following their strong run of form.
Real Salt Lake-Arizona Elite continues Arizona State League play this weekend, with the 17s starting off play against CCV Stars at 11:15 a.m. on Rose Mofford Sports Complex Field 2. They’ll be followed by the 16s taking on SC Del Sol Banat at 1:10 p.m. and finally the 18s versus Arizona Hammers to end the Elite’s weekend slate of games.