The Sporting Kansas City Academy’s younger age groups took the spotlight over the weekend as the U-13s and U-14s squared off against premier competition at the 2018 Central Regional Showcase at Waukegan Sports Park in Waukegan, Illinois. Both teams emerged with 3-1 records in a round-robin that featured some of the best Academy sides in the country.
Sporting KC U-13s at Central Regional Showcase
Playing twice on both Friday and Saturday, the Sporting KC U-13s earned each of their three victories in shutout fashion behind the strong play of goalkeeper Simon Pratt. Ryan Reid bagged a hat-trick in a 4-0 triumph over Armada FC Pro to open the competition, Edgar Bazan and Misael Mena scored in a 2-0 defeat of FC United, and a 3-0 win against Orlando City SC produced goals from Bazan, Carter Derksen and Abreham Soete. Led by head coach Luis Pacheco, the U-13s finished the weekend with nine goals scored and just one allowed.
Sporting KC U-14s at Central Regional Showcase
Like the U-13s, the Sporting KC U-14s recorded three shutout wins as head coach Declan Jogi’s side outscored opponents 8-1. Goalkeepers Charlie Duske and Javier Zaragoza combined for the clean sheets, while Manuel Romero scored the lone goal in Sunday’s opener against the Michigan Wolves. Later that day, the U-14s cruised to a 5-0 triumph over Orlando behind Gage Akalu’s hat-trick and additional goals from Gianluca Armellino and Kelly Kipruto. After opening Monday with a 1-0 loss to Chicago, Sporting KC finished on a winning note against Sockers FC as Romero struck twice.
Mixed results vs. Houston Dynamo
While the U-13s and U-14s were in Waukegan, the Sporting KC U-19s, U-17s and U-15s were in action Saturday against the Houston Dynamo in a U.S. Soccer Development Academy tripleheader at Swope Soccer Village.
The U-19s improved to 5-1-0 in the Frontier Division with a 1-0 victory, notching the decisive goal in the 66th minute through Mason Leeth. The U-19s currently occupy first place in the division, holding a one-point lead over Real Colorado and a two-point advantage over the Colorado Rapids.
The U-17s fell to 1-4-1 on the year after taking a 4-1 loss to Houston, but not before Zion Long gave Sporting KC an early lead in the 10th minute. In the first game of the day, the Sporting KC U-15s moved their record to 4-1-1 after playing to an exciting 2-2 draw with first-half goals from Jack Sartino and Osvaldo Cisneros.
Up Next: Road trip to Colorado
Three Academy teams will continue their Development Academy seasons this weekend in Colorado. The Sporting KC U-15s, U-17s and U-19s will face the Colorado Rapids in a Friday tripleheader at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City before meeting Real Colorado in a Sunday tripleheader at Real Colorado Soccer Complex in Highlands Ranch. Follow @SKCAcademy on Twitter for live updates this weekend and throughout the season.