RSL U18 vs San Diego Surf U18
Starting XI: Luis Barraza, Corey Nemeth, Santi Carrillo, Kostas Kotselas, Amer Sasivarevic, Trevor Hyman, Andrew Brody, Jose “Bean” Vasquez, Tigran Tiraturyan, Coco Navarro
Bench: Aidan Tucker, Benji Lopez, Jaime Payamps, Brandon Johnston, Eric Gonzalez, Luis Chavez, AJ Esparza
Summary – After coming off of a successful weekend in Seattle where they earned 4 points, RSL U18’s were eager grab 3 more points to help increase their lead in the Southwest Division.
RSL came out aggressive early on and almost grabbed the lead in the 4th minute when Coco Navarro’s shot went just wide of the net. Three minutes later Andrew Brody beat a defender down the line and sent in a low cross to a waiting Kostas Kotselas. A Surf defender slid for the ball and accidentally kicked it into his net for an own goal.
The game started to look like RSL could run away with it early but the Surf help their own on defense. RSL continued to pound the Surf goal and were unfortunate to not come up with more goals. Andrew Brody had a shot from the 18 blocked. Corey Nemeth took a shot that went wide and Amer Sasivarevic had back-to-back shots saved by the Surf GK.
In the 52nd minute RSL’s persistence paid off when Jonathan Stadler kicked the ball up to Kostas Kotselas. He trapped the ball and laid it off to Trevor Hyman. Hyman took a shot that went across the face of goal hitting the post. The ball took a fortunate rebound and went right back to Hyman who finished giving RSL a 2-0 lead.
The Surf reacted positively and were able to grab a goal on a counter attack in the 56th minute. RSL calmed down after the goal and the only other chance for the Surf happened in the 68th minute when RSL LB Corey Nemeth chased down a counter attack. With the lead RSL passed the ball around and were under no pressure by the Surf who didn’t challenge players or passes. RSL continued to pass around and cruised to a 2-1 victory over the visiting Surf.
Starting XI: Brooks Lennon, Fito Ovalle, Dillion Nino, Josh Doughty, Luis Lopez, Chase Bishov, Bofo Saucedo, Damian German, Diego Silva, Moises Rodriguez, Jason Eng
Bench: Nate Deaton, Jack Gayton, Aaron Hererra, Miguel Martinez, Albert Molina, Elias Rieland, Evan Waldrep
Summary – After suffering back-to-back losses in Washington RSL needed 3 points to keep pace with the leaders in the Southwest Division.
RSL started out quickly moving the ball around well and pressuring the Surf defense. Only issue for RSL was they couldn’t finish their opportunities. A offisdes call in the 13th minute negated an impressive counter attack. A misfired shot by Fito Ovalle in the 17th minute just went over the crossbar. As RSL missed their chances, Surf players started to gain confidence.
In the 22nd minute a Surf player weaved through the RSL defense and missed his shot. Minutes later another Surf player headed the ball over the crossbar. As the Surf turned up the pressure they also committed more players forward which backfired for them in the 32nd minute. Fito Ovalle played a ball over the top to Bofo Saucedo. He collected the ball dribbled into the box as the Surf GK came out. Saucedo then laid it off to an unmarked Moises Rodriguez who fired the shot into the net.
RSL doubled their lead in the 64th minute when Diego Silva dribbled around the Surf goalie and scored from the wing. With the 2 goal lead RSL passed the ball around and tried to hold on for the shut out but were unfortunately denied that when the Surf scored in the final minute. With seconds remaining after the goal the whistle was blown giving RSl a 2-1 victory.