Three Sporting Kansas City Academy teams ended their respective seasons in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy last week at SoCal Sports Complex in Oceanside, California.
The Sporting KC U-17s and U-19s played three games each at the the 2018 Development Academy Playoffs, both earning third-place finishes in their respective groups. The group stage consisted of a three-game round-robin and sent every first-place finisher to the Development Academy quarterfinals, which will take place today and tomorrow. The four quarterfinal winners will advance to the Development Academy semifinals, to be played at Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City on July 8, followed by the championship games on July 10.
Sporting KC was one of 26 academies to send both its U-17s and U-19s to the postseason this summer. Sporting KC's two oldest Academy teams have both progressed to the playoffs three years straight.
The U-17s began their playoff campaign in dramatic fashion last Tuesday, defeating California club Pateadores FC in a 4-2 thriller behind midfielder Jahon Rad's hat-trick. Rad struck twice in the first half, added a third on 79 minutes and U.S. youth international Cameron Duke sealed the victory with a 90th-minute goal of his own. After a humbling defeat to Seattle Sounders FC on Thursday, the U-17s closed out their season with a wild 5-4 loss to Georgia outfit Concorde Fire. Sporting KC scored each of their four goals in a 12-minute span during the second half, with Ryan Fessler and Gyuwon Chong scoring on either side of Jonathan Munoz's brace.
Sporting KC U-17s: Group C Results and Standings
|Seattle Sounders FC U-17s||3||3||0||0||9||15||3|
|Concorde Fire U-17s||3||1||2||0||3||7||10|
|Sporting Kansas City U-17s||3||1||2||0||3||9||13|
The U-19s scrapped to a 1-1 draw last Monday against eventual group winners Columbus, receiving a 28th-minute goal from Massimo McGuire after Crew SC had taken an early lead. Sporting KC suffered a heartbreaking loss two days later, however, falling 2-1 to the top-ranked New York Red Bulls after Wilson Harris had fired his team ahead on the stroke of halftime. The U-19s rebounded to end the year on a winning note, cruising to a 3-0 triumph over Florida club Kendall SC on Friday as Sebastian Cruz, Wilson Harris and Sean Karani — three players who have signed Academy contracts with the Swope Park Rangers — all found the back of the net.
Sporting KC U-19s: Group F Results and Standings
|Columbus Crew SC U-19s||3||2||0||1||7||8||3|
|New York Red Bulls U-19s||3||2||1||0||6||3||2|
|Sporting Kansas City U-19s||3||1||1||1||4||5||3|
|Kendall SC U-19s||3||0||3||0||0||2||10|
While the U-17s and U-19s competed in the playoffs, the Sporting KC U-15s participated in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Showcase, featuring U-15 academy clubs from across the country. The U-15s finished their 2017-18 campaign with round-robin matches on Thursday, Friday and Sunday in Oceanside.
Sporting KC opened their three-game set with a 3-1 defeat of Atlanta United FC on Thursday, receiving a brace from Coby Jones and a third goal from Zion Long. The U-15s slipped to a 3-2 loss the next day against the Portland Timbers as Kayden Pierre and Gage Akalu scored on either side of halftime, and finished their season Sunday with a scoreless draw versus Florida side Chargers SC.
Sporting KC U-15s at Development Academy Showcase