Academy Update: U14s and U15s Lock Up Spots at July Nationals
Another weekend for the Red Bulls Academy, another undefeated outing for all sides.
In U-14 action, the Red Bulls won the regional playoffs for a third straight season, defeating Albertson 5-2 in the semi-finals and PDA 2-0 in the championship game on Sunday. Markez Zalla scored the first goal against PDA to give the Red Bulls the 1-0 lead, one they carried into the second half before getting an insurance goal from Sean Teixera to secure the 2-0 victory. The win added to the club’s already impressive record of 30-1-1 on the season. The team will travel to Colorado in July for a chance to play for the national championship.
Similar to the U-14 club, the U-15 Red Bulls also defeated Albertson in the semi-finals and then PDA, 3-0. The match against Albertson needed extra time to find a winner after Rafeal Terci tallied a goal for the Red Bulls in regulation. But it was Ethan Lochner stepped up in overtime to score the winning goal for the Red Bulls. Next up was a match between U-15s and PDA. Neither side could find the back of the net in the first half, but it would be the Red Bulls who struck first before goals from Rafeal Terci and Malik Steward helped propel the Red Bulls to a 3-0 victory that earned them a trip to Colorado for nationals in July.
The U-23 club won both their fixtures, outscoring opponents 5-0 along the way. On Saturday the Red Bulls faced Maine’s Seacoast Mariners. John Gurel started the scoring for the Red Bulls in the 18th minute off a cross from Keith Francisco and then would add his second of the match just three minutes when he played a pass from Dan Bedoya and made a nice dribble and cutback move on the defender to work his way in on goal and fire one into the netting. Gurel had the hot foot and continued to fire shots on goal, looking for the hat trick. In the 85th minute, Gurel tallied his third goal of the match when he took a pass from David Najem on a late breakaway and locked up the 3-0 win for the Red Bulls.
On Sunday, the U-23 club played a match against New Hampshire’s Seacoast Phantoms. John Gurel continued to ride the hot scoring streak when he deflected Dan Bedoya’s free kick in the 27th minute. Oscar Gonzalas added an insurance goal in the 73rd minute from Franklin Castellanos after an excellent cross from Scott Thomsen led to the build up.