It’s official: two Sporting Kansas City Academy clubs have punched their tickets to the 2017-18 U.S. Soccer Development Academy Playoffs.
The Sporting KC U-17s have clinched a top-three finish in the Central Conference’s Frontier Division with one regular season match to spare, thus securing an automatic postseason berth. The Sporting KC U-19s also occupy third place heading into the final weekend of the regular season and can finish no worse than with a wildcard spot, given to the top 11 teams across the country that place outside the top three of their respective divisions.
The Development Academy Playoffs will run from June 18-24 at SoCal Sports Complex in Oceanside, California, with the four group stage winners in each age group advancing to the 2018 Academy Championships from July 8-11 at Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City, Missouri.
Three Sporting KC Academy teams were involved in a pair of tripleheaders this weekend at Swope Soccer Village. The U-15s, U-17s and U-19s welcomed fellow MLS outfit Colorado Rapids on Saturday and Sunday during a busy Memorial Day Weekend that also saw Sporting Kansas City and the Swope Park Rangers host matches in MLS and USL action, respectively.
The U-17s slipped to a 3-0 defeat on Saturday but bounced back in impressive fashion on Sunday, posting a 2-0 victory with first-half goals from Jacob Davis and Jahon Rad. The win gave Sporting KC an unassailable five-point cushion over the fourth-place Houston Dynamo going into next Saturday’s regular season finale.
The U-19s took a 2-1 loss on Saturday before playing Colorado to a wild 5-5 draw on Sunday behind a brace from U.S. U-20 international Wilson Harris and additional strikes courtesy of Sebastian Cruz, Isaac McGinnis and Gabe Findley. Even if Sporting KC were to lose its final league match next Saturday, the team’s 1.77 points per game clip would guarantee a top-11 finish in the wildcard pool.
Up Next: Tripleheader Saturday at Swope
The Sporting KC U-15s, U-17s and U-19s will close out the 2017-18 regular season this Saturday, playing host to Real Colorado in a tripleheader at Swope Soccer Village. The U-17s will kick off at 10 a.m. CT, followed by the U-15s and U-19s at 12:30 p.m. CT. All three games are free and open to the public to attend. Follow the Sporting KC Academy on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat (skcacademy) for updates next weekend and throughout the year.