Academy Recap: Barça Residency Academy U-16s win 2018 Arsenal Challenge Championship
October 10, 2018
The Barça Residency Academy USSDA teams enjoyed the weekend off from competition while the Pre-Academy teams competed in the 2018 Arsenal Challenge.
The Pre-Academy teams had exceptional results, going 11W-2L-0D while outscoring their opponents 34-15. The U-16s, U-17s, U-18s and U-19s were all undefeated in the tournament and qualified for the semi-finals but unfortunately, the U-17, U-18 and U-19 semi-finals and finals were cancelled due to flooding at the Scottsdale Sports Complex.
However, the U-16s played across town at the Red Mountain Soccer Complex where they went 2-0 in the group stage, beat MSC United 4-2 in the semi-finals and Phoenix Premier FC 1-0 in the final to claim the 2018 Arsenal Challenge U16 Championship.
The U-16s kicked off the Arsenal Challenge on Friday night at the Red Mountain Soccer Complex where they dominated SC del Sol, shutting them out 7-0 with goals by: Alonso Fernandez (2), Ocean Salari (3), Adrian Sanchez and Shane Simpson.
The U-16s took the field against RSL-AZ Yuma on Saturday in a low scoring affair that ended 1-0 in favor of Barça on a late goal scored by Rafael Ceniceros.
The U-16s faced MSC United in the semi-finals on Sunday morning in rainy conditions. They tallied six goals and beat MSC United 6-1 to secure their spot in the tournament final.
The weather cleared up as the day went on and the U-16s kicked off in the championship game at noon in perfect playing conditions with clouds scattered throughout the Arizona sky. The U-16s controlled possession in the opening half and looked dangerous at times in the final third but could not score and the teams entered halftime deadlocked at 0-0.
The U-16s carved out their first real chance of the game just minutes into the second half. Rafael Ceniceros crossed the ball back post to Nolan Patterson who volleyed his shot just over the crossbar. Adrian Sanchez opened scoring in the 63rd minute, giving Barça a 1-0 lead. The remainder of the game would go without incident and the U-16s were crowned the 2018 Arsenal Challenge U-16 Champions.
The U-17s, U-18s and U-19s kicked off the Arsenal Challenge on Saturday with two games apiece, all finishing 2-0 and earning spots in the tournament semi-finals. Unfortunately, severe rain on Saturday night into Sunday morning caused flooding at the Scottsdale Sports Complex resulting in a cancellation of the remainder of the tournament for the older age groups (U-17-U19).
On Saturday, the U-19s beat SC del Sol 2-1 with goals by Bernardo Padilla and Bryan Rodriguez, both assisted by Tyler Hutchinson. They later shut out Phoenix Premier 3-0 with goals from Bryan Rodriguez, Amadeo Chapru-Tate and Musa Yansaneh.
Bryan Park paced the U-18s to both their victories. Park scored a brace in their 2-0 win over SC del Sol and scored the lone goal of the game against Arizona Arsenal. Athan Cosse assisted on two of the three goals.
The U-17s beat RSL-AZ South 2-1, Luka Polic scored a brace and Zishim Bawa added the other. They then beat Phoenix Rising 2-1 with goals by Amin Sidialicherif and Anthony Jimenez.
The U-15s who have struggled with injuries this season defeated RSL-AZ South 3-0 on Saturday in their first game of the tournament with goals from Rafael Munoz, Khalif Muhammad and Abraham Arciniega. They fell to Arizona Arsenal 5-1 on Saturday and ended the tournament on Sunday in the consolation bracket with an unfortunate 5-4 loss to Arizona Arsenal B.
This weekend, the Academy teams will enjoy another weekend off and the Pre-Academy U-15s, U-16s and U-19s will continue with Arizona Premier League action.
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