D.C. United’s Under-16 Academy teams beat Potomac at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown, Md., this week by a 3-1 score.
The U-16s went up 2-0 in the first half after Luis Cartagena tallied in the 22nd minute (assisted by Dallas Aminzadeh) and Omar Kabba doubled the lead in the 32nd (assisted by Sam Bradley). Potomac got a goal back in the 68th minute, but Nick Smirniotopoulos iced the game with a goal in the 80th.
“Our U-166s progressed this weekend with a comprehensive 3-1 win over much-improved local rivals Potomac Academy,” said U-16 Head Coach Richie Burke. “More importantly, we produced a very satisfying performance, dominating possession and creating many good chances. We were glad of the tremendous form of our two young strikers, Marcus Selandy-Dufour and Luis Cartagena, both of whom are young enough to have another two seasons with us at U-16 level. Each was involved in most of our offensive work with Luis scoring his second Academy goal in as many starts. We received strong performances once again from team leaders Nicky Yin, Steve Mashinski and Sam Bradley – all were very significant to our team’s high level of play. We will go into the winter break with confidence high and will look to the re-start of our matches in February with renewed anticipation.”
U-18s settle for tie
The U-18s were forced to settle for a 2-2 draw after going up 2-0 in the game’s first 22 minutes. United’s William ‘Junior’ Bioh talled in the 20th minute (assisted by Chris Hegngi) and Shane Cooke struck just two minutes later (assisted by Travis Pittman) to give D.C. the early lead, but Potomac struck in the 34th minute and were awarded a penalty in the 70th, which was converted and proved to be the final goal of the match.
“It can be frustrating to lose a 2-0 lead., but we have to remember it is very early in season,” said U-18 Head Coach Judah Cooks. “We will see this style of play in many games throughout the year and the challenge for our boys and staff is to continue to play attractive soccer while breaking down teams that play a more defensive, counter-attack style. It was a game that we will learn and get better from.”
The Academy teams will now turn its focus to the Disney Showcase in Orlando December 26-30 where it will play Chelsea in its first match. In preparation for the tournament, the team will play friendly matches versus local club Arlington and affiliate club Freestate.