Grande Sports Academy home of Real Salt Lake Arizona will be entering its 4th year in the Fall. With many players leaving for college, the Academy is always looking for the next generation of players who will be donning an RSL kit. In the video below hear from players Andres Irigoyen, Andrew Brody, Eric Gonzalez, Brandon Marquez, Cesar Cobos, Jaime Payamps and Jonathan Stadler as they tell you why they came to the Academy and how it has made them better players. Coach Freddy Juarez also talks about the philosophy and teaching as the Academy. Director of Recruiting Miha Kline talks about the facility and RA Lauren Crum talks about the academic side.
Grande Sports Academy would like to congratulate the 24 seniors who celebrated graduation from High School this year.
Andrew Brody, Ive Burnett, Luis Chavez, Cesar Cobos, AJ Esparza, Elijah Evans, Danny Gavin, Eric Gonzalez, Trevor Hyman, Brandon Johnston, Isaias “Junior” Juarez, Kostas Kotselas, Riggs Lennon, Benjamin Lopez, Brandon Marquez, Antonio “Tony” Murillo, Jose “Coco” Navarro, Amer Sasivarevic, Jonathan Stadler, Tigran Tiraturyan, Aidan Tucker, Haedan Turner, Jose “Bean” Vasquez, Jon Zabasajja.
Haedan Turner, one of our International players from Canada, celebrated his High School graduation from Primavera High School last night with teammates Tigran Tiraturyan and Andres Irigoyen. Congratulations to all of our seniors and good luck at the next level. To see pictures from the two other graduation ceremonies click the links below.
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Once per month Grande Sports Academy players participate in a local community service project. In February, players cleaned up a local park. In March, players visited the Boys & Girls Club and in the following month they invited the Boys & Girls Club to the Academy. When our players participate in these projects it is usually just a small group, however this month was a little different.
Forty-three of our players visited three Elementary Schools on Friday morning. Our players became coaches for the day and led the participants through drills, shooting exercises and games. As with every community service project our players enjoyed the experience and the opportunity to share the game they love so much. The schools players visited were: Mesquite Elementary School, Cactus Middle School and Desert Willow Elementary School.
Player who participated: Patricio Cevallos, Christian Herrera, Luis Barraza, Jaime Payamps, Bayley Scholz, Elias Rieland, Terreel Lowe, Miles Stray, Fito Ovalle, Jason Eng, Brandon Johnston, Amer Sasivarevic, Luis Chavez, Moises Rodriguez, Andrew Brody, Eric Gonzalez, Javi Avelar, Jack Gayton, Trevor Hyman, Aaron Herrera, Diego Silva, Nicholas LaMonica, Elijah Evans, Kostas Kotselas, Jose Hernandez, Te Wihongi, Brandon Marquez, Cesar Cobos, Tevin Lowe, Trent Lowe, Corey Nemeth, Octavio Ocampo, Renzo Perez, Brandon Sands, Chandler Maynes, Jonathan Min, Radu Marcu, Alex Knox, Haedan Turner, Andres Irigoyen, Josh Coan, Nick Reyes, Tigran Tiraturyan, Coco Navarro.
Special thanks go to RA’s Lauren Crum and Chris Braybooks who set up the event.
With three games in three days RSL U18 Elite knew this weekend was going to be tough. After dropping the first game, 0-4, to Carlsbad Elite Boys in California, RSL had to race back to prepare for games on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning at Grande Sports Academy. On Saturday afternoon RSL lost to Pumas Premier FC Academy, 0-4, and on Sunday morning RSL fought back from a 2 goal deficit to tie the game, 2-2, going into the half. However, RSL was outdone in the second half when Simi Valley Eclipse scored two more goals defeating RSL, 4-2.
Even with tough results RSL players were optimistic going into every game holding their heads high. RSL at times played fairly well holding their own against every team. Unfortunately miscommunication, errant passes and a few defensive breakdowns gave their opponents opportunities to take of advantage of which reflected in the scoreline.
Throughout the three games GK’s Jaime Payamps and Miguel Martinez made multiple goal saving stops. In RSL’s third game Aiden Tucker scored from a Te Wihongi pass and Eric Gonzalez scored a PK.
With the three losses RSL U18 Elite have been eliminated in the first round of Far West Regional. Results here.
Quotes from the games:
Assistant Coach Tony Bruce – Thoughts on weekend – “Three games in three days is tough. It’s tough to recover and you could see fatigue for us. Balls that went away that normally we don’t give away. A lot of it comes down to fatigue and just mistakes in our half. We continue to play the way we play because that is to continue to develop players. And not just have them do long balls and direct. Even when we are down 2 goals we still try to play and when you are tired and sometimes you are going to make mistakes.”
Aiden Tucker – Goal breakdown – “We had a corner and it was a good play from Te, a good pass on the ground and I tapped it in.”
Adam Ferguson – Thoughts on weekend – “I thought we played hard tough weekend. Three 90 minute games all back to back to back. It was tough but I think our team competed and we did much better than the scorelines show.”
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