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Team Chicago Academy-Cruzeiro opened its MRL Premier Division Qualification group play with a 3-game weekend in Minneapolis-St. Paul and emerged with 3 wins and the only perfect record thus far in the 8-team division.
Playing on turf in driving rain on Saturday morning against a very good Minneapolis United home team, the odds where definitely not in Cruzeiro’s favor. However, a spirited defensive performance coupled with some quality attacking moments, saw Cruzeiro come away with an important 1-0 win.
Halfway through the 2nd half Alyssa Bombacino found Jamie Goralski with a great pass in behind the left back. Jamie cut the ball back and played a perfect pass to Kerry Abello on the left flank who immediately beat the right back 1v1 and scored easily to secure the win.
In much better conditions on Saturday afternoon, Cruzeiro expertly dismissed an outmatched MK Tosa team 4-0. Two Kerry Abello goals within 10 minutes effectively sealed the deal for Cruzeiro. On the first goal Sarah Avery threaded a pass from the back-line into Jordan King who immediately found Kerry Abello on the left flank. Jamie Goralski pulled a defender wide, which allowed Kerry to split two defenders and walk it in for the eventual game-winner. On the second goal it was Sofia Papoutsis who found Jordan King from the back-line, and Jordan played an absolutely perfect through-ball into the path of Kerry Abello’s perfectly timed run, and she calmly walked it in for the insurance goal.
Cruzeiro took a 3-0 lead into the half when Kerry Abello drove at the left back and cut inside and beat the GK with a right-footed shot that skipped on the turf. Midway through the 2nd half Kerry Abello made it 4-0 final from a great Jordan King corner.
On a sunny but very brisk Sunday morning, Cruzeiro faced Waukesha SC from Wisconsin who had also won their two games on Saturday. It was a very tight game, but Cruzeiro had the better of the chances and came away with a 1-0 win on a Kerry Abello goal immediately off winning a dropped ball at the top of the Waukesha penalty box.
Overall it was a very strong performance by Cruzeiro especially defensively. The whole team defended with great might and shared in Bailee Witt and Anna Aubuchon’s three shutouts in goal. Up next for Cruzeiro are two MRL games in St. Louis this upcoming weekend. With just a single win in its last four games Cruzeiro will qualify for the Spring MRL Premier Division I.
Team Chicago Academy-Brasilia traveled to Overland Park, Kansas this past weekend for U15 MRL Premier competition knowing that one win would be enough to retain its Premier Division I status for the 2014 U16 season.
The opening game was against Futura Forte Premier who were the 2013 Spring MRL Premier champions. Brasilia came away with a 1-2 loss, but deserved a better result. Early on Futura had more possession, but as the game developed Brasilia found more of the ball and started to create dangerous opportunities.
Safia Hannin had the best chance after a great run with ball that ended with her beating the keeper low to the near post only to have the ball deflect off the post across the goal. Being opportunistic, Maggie Roe was there to tuck the ball away but the goal was ruled offside. Brasilia continued to apply pressure and a poor clearance by Futura found its way to Jasmine Ruiz who did a nice job to collect the ball and beat the keeper far post to go up 1-0.
Futura responded with two goals in a span of about 10 minutes to go up 2-1. With less than a minute to play Madison Lockard’s punt bounced over the last defender for Futura which created a break away on goal for Rachel White and Julia Hosler, but again it was ruled offside. Overall this was a very competitive game with glimpses of good things to come.
Sunday morning’s game was against Toro Galaticos out of Omaha, Nebraska who are the reigning State Cup Champs. The first goal turned out to be the game-winner and started with Safia Hannin driving the ball in from the right side that was played by both Maggie Roe and Rachel White before finding Makenna Schoolman who buried her shot past the keeper. Brasilia went into the half up 1-0 and controlling more of the half.
The second half started right where Brasilia left off with Jasmine Ruiz playing a nice through-ball to Maggie Roe who beat the last defender and the GK before finishing the play to go up 2-0 ten minutes into the half. The third goal came off a corner that was sent into the box by Jasmine Ruiz. Abby Severson met the ball first and flicked the ball onto Emmerson Fuller who settled the ball and calmly finished the play to make the final score 3-0.
Brasilia continued to create some great opportunities and with great ball movement. The best shot of the match came from Maddie Lambert who was on the right side of the box about 25yards from goal. Maddie made a great first touch, eluded her defender and fired her shot that just missed the upper 90, but was a great example of the type of opportunities Brasilia created.
Brasilia will now face NSA and Libertyville 1974 in the next round of MRL Premier Division games.
Team Chicago Academy-Santos striker Sara Stevens has accepted a great scholarship offer to continue her career at NCAA Division II powerhouse Grand Valley State University in Allendale, MI. Sara, who plays her prep soccer for Plainfield North H.S., will be part of Grand Valley Head Coach Dave DiIanni’s 2014 recruiting class.
Grand Valley is currently the top-ranked NCAA Division II team and has won 2 National Championships over the past 4 years. At Grand Valley Sara will be joining fellow Team Chicago Academy player Tracey McCoy.
Both Team Chicago Academy-Brasilia and Team Chicago Academy-Internacional were off to perfect starts in the U15 MRL Premier Division and U17 MRL First Division this past weekend.
Brasilia’s opening game in Muscatine, IA was against Omaha FC Elite – three time State Champions from Nebraska – and Brasilia came away with a 4-3 victory. Early on in the match MaKenna Schoolman was played in 1v1 with the GK and just nearly scored. However, instead Brasilia fell behind midway through the first half against the run of play.
The balance of the goals were all scored in the second half. The first came as Maggie Roe played a nice ball to put Safia Hannin in behind the defense, and she calmly beat the keeper to tie it up. Both goals scored in the second half by Omaha FC were off of restarts. Brasilia second goal came off of a combination that started with Jade Eriksen-Russo who played the ball into Abby Severson who found Jasmine Ruiz 30 yards away from goal. Jasmine’s goal was the result of great field awareness and seeing the keeper off her line and she placed it perfectly.
The third goal came from a nice ball served over the top from Jasmine that found Maggie Roe in on goal who fought off pressure to place the ball in the corner. The game winner goal came off a great ball played over the top by Lupe Anguiano that found Abby Severson. Abby found Maggie Roe in the box and she made a nice turn to place the ball past the keeper.
Sunday morning’s game was against Kansas Rush. This game was a defensive battle and ended with a 1-0 victory for Team Chicago. The only goal came from a heads-up play from Safia Hannin who went after a ball that looked as if it were going out, and she got a hold of it and served a great ball across the six. Maggie Roe ran onto the ball and smashed it home for the game winner.
The biggest play came in the second half when the referee awarded Rush a penalty kick. The Kansas Rush player stepped up and hit a well-placed shot that looked like it was going in only to be denied by a fantastic save by Madison Lockard. The back four were resilient and should be recognized for their tireless work throughout the game. Congrats to Nicole Mondi, Emmerson Fuller, Jade Eriksen-Russo and Rachel Erdman.
Brasilia will now travel to Overland Park, Kansas for the next round of MRL Premier Division games.
Internacional traveled to East Lansing, MI to take on TNT and MI Gators. Both games ended with 3-1 wins for Internacional.
On Saturday night, Sam O’Brien opened the scoring from a great Miranda Lambert run and cross on-top of the six-yard box. Against the run of play TNT struck back to make it 1-1 before halftime.
However, Internacional responded really well in the 2nd half and Sam O’Brien got the eventual game-winner from a great win and pass in the midfield by Cailin LaRoque 10 minutes into the half. The insurance goal came with 5 minutes left when Jordan Wilde won a ball in the air and found the side-netting of the far post with a perfect finish.
On Sunday morning Internacional created several 100% chances in the opening 10 minutes, but the only goal came from Sam O’Brien’s individual effort beating a defender 1v1 and walking it in. The rest of the half was more of the same – total Internacional dominance in terms of chances but they all went begging.
10 minutes into the 2nd half Miranda Lambert got the game-winner when she took a great Alena Sidwell pass, and calmly walked the ball in across the chasing defenders and slotted it home at the far post. MI Gators struck back off a free-kick with 20 minutes left, but Alena Sidwell finished them off with 3 minutes left in the game with another perfect far post finish from the top of the six-yard box off Sam O’Brien’s cross.
Next up for Internacional is a must-win State Cup game at FCX in South Barrington at 11:30am this Saturday.
It was a battle of Team Chicago Academy players when the Metea Valley H.S. freshmen just played the Neuqua Valley H.S. freshman.
It was a great game that Neuqua won 2-1. Team Chicago Academy U15 Head Coach Mike Schmitt enjoyed watching his coaching efforts pay off with the strong performances by the following boys.
From left to right: Steven Kizorek, Connor Ahler, Dominic Duffy, Michael Vivo, Adam Bose, Spencer Wiese, Alex Simonich, Antonio Magno, George Fitsalos, Emerson Beinhauer, Wesley Anderson, Alex Filo, Aayush Kaul, and Calum Nettleton.