10 Dec Barca Residency Academy U-17s and U-19s Undefeated at DA Showcase
December 10, 2019
Casa Grande, Ariz –The Barça Residency Academy Academy U-17s and U-19s traveled to Sarasota, Florida to compete in the annual U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase that took place December 4-8, 2019 at Premier Sports Campus. The Barça Residency Academy teams finished the showcase with an undefeated record, posting five wins and a draw.
Ged Quinn’s U-19s battled to a 0-0 draw against Real Colorado, edged Chargers Soccer Club 2-1 in a tight match, and topped Concorde Fire 3-1 on the final day of competition. Chris Harmon’s U-17s finished the showcase with 9 total goals and a perfect 3-0 record after defeating Columbus City Crew 3-1, North Carolina FC Youth 3-2, and FC Delco 3-1.
U-18/19 USSDA (DA) Winter Showcase
Barça Residency Academy U-19 vs. Real Colorado
The U-19s kicked off the competition on Friday morning against No. 15 ranked Real Colorado. The first half was a tight game with minimal chances for both sides. Although Barça Residency Academy dominated possession, they struggled to create much in front of the goal in the first 45 minutes. The best chance of the half fell to Real Colorado on a breakaway opportunity that Barça goalkeeper Nathan Schnur tipped over the post to keep the score at 0-0 going into the interval.
In the second half, Barça Residency Academy created a number of good chances with Bryce Duke having a great strike saved by the Real Colorado goalkeeper and Julian Gaines also testing the Real Colorado keeper in a 1v1 situation. Nathan Schnur came up with another huge save in the 90th minute as the game got stretched in the last 10 minutes with Barça pushed for the game-winner. The battle ended in a 0-0 draw, the first time that Barça has not scored at least one goal in a game.
Barça Residency Academy U-19 vs. Chargers Soccer Club
The U-19s took the field the following day against Chargers Soccer Club (Clearwater, Florida). Both teams playing in back to back games, the match got off to a slow start. Barça Residency Academy found themselves down 1-0 in the 22nd minute from a poor turnover midway inside their own half. They responded well though and in the 34th minute, Elias Thomas leveled the score with a towering header from a corner kick.
Barça Residency Academy eventually managed to unlock the Chargers’ backline in the 76th minute when Bryce Duke playing a cross to the back post which Caden Clark connected on and played back across the goal for Jason Villalba to tap home from two yards out. Barça Residency Academy dealt with plenty of long balls into the defensive area in the final 15 minutes of the game but held strong to secure the 2-1 win.
Barça Residency Academy U-19 vs. Concorde Fire
After a day of rest, the Barça Residency Academy U-19s started the game well against Concorde Fire (Atlanta, Georgia) in the final day of competition. Barça looked refreshed and sharp in possession early on but an individual error after 10 minutes allowed Concorde to score on a 1v1 situation.
In a similar fashion to the Chargers game, Barça Residency Academy responded well and were patient in possession. They were rewarded in the 30th minute when Jason Vilalba netted his second goal of the showcase on a brilliant through ball from Caden Clark. Barça continued to control possession right out of the half. In the 47th minute, a Concorde player was sent off after two yellow cards. Barça quickly capitalized on their advantage. In the 53rd minute, Ilijah Paul took the ball inside the 18-yard box with pressure on his back, turned and stunned the keeper with a sizzling shot to the top corner of the goal. Barça finally killed the game off in the 90th minute with their third goal. Bryce Duke who worked his way to the goal line with some nifty individual skill played Amadeo Chapru Tate inside the six-yard box for an easy tap in.
“To came away from an event like this with two wins and a tie is rewarding for the guys,” said head coach Ged Quinn. “We played some well-organized teams this week who made life difficult for us but we stuck to our principles and as a result had success. The guys also showed good character, in two of the 3 games we went behind and the response was good to come back and win both of those games.”
U-16/17 USSDA (DA) Winter Showcase
Barça Residency Academy U-17 vs. Columbus Crew Academy
The Barça Residency Academy U-17s kicked off their impressive showcase journey on Thursday, December 5th against MLS Columbus Crew Academy. Barça began the game well and dominated possession while creating a few chances for themselves. They were able to open the scoring in the 13th minute with great combination play on the left side with Dante Williams providing a creative final pass for Ulysses Martinez who chipped the keeper and after a deflection followed in with his head to give his team the edge.
After conceding early on, Columbus Crew made few adjustments that made it difficult for Barça to double their advantage. Barça struggled to create fluid buildup and progress the ball forward. After some adjustments by head coach Chris Harmon at the interval, Barça was able to find their rhythm again. Their ball movement in the second half was excellent, they were able to break the pressure of the opposition and doubled their advantage in the 52nd minute with a goal by young standout, Samuel Mendoza.
Eight minutes later, Barça conceded a PK that momentarily made things interesting. Barça kept their composure and Ronan Kratt scored the third goal in the 70th minute to sealed the victory.
“Credit to our boys for sticking to our principles and continuing to find ways to break their pressure,” said Harmon. “I’m extremely proud of how the boys responded to adversity and quickly found the 3rd goal which closed out the game”.
Barça Residency Academy U-1 vs. North Carolina FC
The U-17s faced North Carolina FC (NCFC) the following day and once again got off to a great start as they took control of the game from the kickoff. Ronan Kratt created a great chance early on from inside NCFC’s box that he could not quite sneak it past the keeper. NCFC ultimately opened the scoring in the 13th minute and showed that they could be very dangerous in their counter-attack.
After the goal, the game saw several swings in momentum favoring both sides. Ronan Kratt got one past the keeper the 18th minute when he scored the equalizer. Kratt completed a brace just ten minutes later when he scored his second goal from inside the box with conviction that gave Barça a short-lived 2-1 advantage. NCFC leveled the score in the 33rd minute and closed out the half with the momentum.
With the score level at 2-2, it was anyone’s game in the second half. Barça Residency Academy substitute, Ocean Salari proved to be the difference maker as he came in and provide a spark off the bench. Salari created many chances for his team and in the 60th minute played Samuel Mendoza in the box who was ultimately fouled. Uly Martinez stepped up to the mark and placed the game-winner past the keeper to secure the 3-2 win.
Barça Residency Academy U-19 vs. FC Delco
After a day of rest, the U-17s took on FC Delco in the final day of the competition in what would turn out to be a tale of two halves. Barça Residency Academy conceded a goal in the 6th minute from a set-piece where they failed to control the second ball and were punished. With an early 1-0 advantage, FC Delco then sat very deep and made it difficult for Barça to score in the first half. Delco held Barça scoreless and took their 1-0 lead into the interval.
The second half was a completely different game. Barça Residency Academy dominated possession and created many chances right out the gate and mostly from wide areas. Both Barça outside backs, Edwin Arias and David Cordes, did an excellent job providing dangerous chances from wide areas. Barça was finally able to break through in the 79th minute when Dante Williams provided a great through ball for Samuel Mendoza who won a corner. On the next play, Mendoza headed home the equalizer. From there, Barça did not look back. In the 84th minute, Mendoza turned from scorer to provider when he served and excellent ball to Ronan Kratt, Kratt’s shot was denied by the goalkeeper but Ulysses Martinez followed in with an excellent finish for the game-winner. Nathan Hurtado added the insurance with a 90th minute goal to provide Barça the 3-1 victory and an unblemished undefeated 3-0 showcase record.
“I am very proud of the way the boys handled adversity this week,” said Harmon. “Every time we faced tough moments and suffered during the games, the boys pulled together and found solutions on the pitch. This group made a statement this week and deserved the results they worked so hard for.”
“Moises Mondragon and Angel Ramirez were dominate all weekend playing in the back and leading our team,” Harmon added. “Scoring 9 goals on the weekend feels great as that’s the type of attacking soccer we promote.”
The U-17s wrapped up 2019 on a six-game win streak and head into the break with great momentum and high expectations for the remainder of the DA season.
“This group is extremely bought in and they are playing together and enjoying our brand of soccer,” Harmon concluded.
The Academy U-19s will close out the year this weekend in Northern California with a weekend double-header against Silicon Balley Soccer Academy on Saturday and Breakers FC on Sunday.