On an unseasonably warm afternoon, the U18 Academy teams from D.C. United and Albertson SC tied 1-1 on the campus of the University of Maryland.
There's plenty of elite girls' soccer action to watch around the Washington D.C. area this weekend, as the majority of the Washington Area Girls Soccer League squads have matches on Saturday and Sunday.
After last weekend's opening play, several teams have put themselves at the top of their brackets, but many other divisions remain wide open for the taking. It's a long season, however, so even the early leaders will have to keep their best foot forward to retain their positions.
High School Divisions
"You just live each day like it's the last day of your life," said Ty Lewis during an interview for NBC Washington on February 13, 2011. "Play each game like it's the last you'll ever play."
Lewis, the head coach of the Reston Knights FC, a South Lakes High School alumnus and a prominent figure in northern Virginia's youth soccer scene, passed away on Saturday after battling colon cancer for over three years. He was 44.
The first weekend of WAGS (Washington Area Girls' Soccer League) games kicked off this past weekend, with dozens of teams from around the area competing for an early advantage on the divisional scoreboard. Even after only two days of play, clear early leaders emerged in many of the age groups, while other divisions will remain battles until the final games in June.
High School Divisions
Washington, D.C. - D.C. United’s Youth Academy compiled a 4-2-2 record against the New York Cosmos and Met Oval over the past weekend in U.S. Soccer Development Academy Play.
A busy weekend in the USSF Development Academy saw a number of MLS teams
emerge as winners.
Real Salt Lake came away from four games undefeated, winning
all but one match. The U-18s got things started right by beating Santa Cruz Breakers
Academy 4-0, before the U-16s grabbed a 4-3 win of their own. The only blemish
of the weekend came when the U-18s tied De Anza Force 2-2, while the U-16s won
4-1 for their second win in two days.
As the arrival of spring looms, the schedule of the USSF Development Academy ramps up into overdrive. This weekend is going to be the busiest 2011 has seen so far, with 64 games are on the schedule.
Six of those teams heading into action are MLS Academies, and all but one faces the prospect of playing games on both days of the weekend.
Starting out west, Real Salt Lake stay at home, welcoming the Santa Cruz Breakers and De Anza Force.
The start of the MLS season is right around the corner, and for a handful of clubs across the country, last weekend provided a chance for MLS academies to head into action.
There were some strong performances from some academy sides as the hunt for a spot in the Development Academy playoffs later this summer heats up. The San Jose Earthquakes posted a 3-1 mark at home, as the U-16s defeated Irvine Strikers 5-1 before squeaking past Pateadores 1-0. The U-18s couldn’t quite replicate that success, defeating the Strikers 2-1 before losing 2-0 to Pateadores.
Two days of dreary skies and gray weather gave way to sunshine at the Jefferson Cup on Sunday, and as the wind picked up, so did the action. At West Creek, a marquee matchup in the U17 Championship division pitted the talk of the tournament, Aztecs FC of San Diego, against the always-solid Herndon FC of Virginia.
Having downed Georgia's Cobb FC with a late winner on Saturday, coach Hector Diaz and his Aztecs might have been looking for something a little more comfortable against Herndon. But the white-clad Virginians refused to cooperate.
The Beautiful West Creek facility in Richmond was the sight of some of the highest leves of youth soccer in the country on Saturday.