How long did you and Mikias [Eticha] play together?
He came in going into my U-18 season, so we had basically one full year together at D.C. United, including Reserve Team call-ups, U-23 summer league this past year. So, the season was a long one – obviously, it’s all year round – but we got to know each other really well.
You and Tyler [Rudy] played in Reserve games together while at the D.C. United Academy. How do those games compare to the style of play in college?
First of all, it’s different – the way of playing in Reserve Games and college. If I didn’t play in those Reserve games, it would have been harder getting used to playing in college. There are bigger guys than us, so the Reserve games prepared us for a bigger challenge.
Almost exactly a year and a half ago – June 7, 2011 – sophomores Mikias Eticha (University of Maryland; Falls Church, Va.; Arlington Soccer Association) and Tyler Rudy (Georgetown University; Olney, Md.; Olney Boys and Girls Club) impressed as Academy players in a D.C. United Reserve match, a 2-2 draw against the New England Revolution. Tomorrow (Friday, December 7; 5:00 p.m. ET), they are set to square off on opposite sides of the pitch, Eticha with the storied Terrapins program and Rudy with an emerging Hoyas side.
Congratulations to the D.C. United U-16 Development Academy who will go into their winter break as the number one team in the nation. The Academy is the only division leader who boasts an undefeated record over the first 13 matches. With a 2.69 points per game average, they also lead their age-group in goals. 15 year old Gerson Umana, sits atop the individual standings with 11 goals on the season.
D.C. United’s U-18 and U-16 squads returned home from Bradenton, Fla., after strong Development Academy Winter Showcase performances from an extended weekend trip, going 2-1-0 and 2-0-1, respectively.
Two former D.C. United Academy players, sophomore Mikias Eticha (University of Maryland; Falls Church, Va.; Arlington Soccer Association) and sophomore Tyler Rudy (Georgetown University; Olney, Md.; Olney Boys and Girls Club), and their respective universities reached the quarterfinals of the College Cup this past weekend. Freshman goalkeeper Cody Niedermeier (Arnold, Va.; Olney Boys and Girls Club) is another former Academy product who features for Maryland, but a recently reinjured wrist has kept him from seeing action.
About halfway through the 2012-13 NCAA season, the first year that MLS will graduate a class of homegrown players, several former members of D.C. United Academy teams are making significant contributions to their respective collegiate squads.
Uwem Etuk, a senior at West Virginia University, has tallied six assists this season, best (tied) among all players in the Mid-American Conference. Etuk’s Mountaineers currently sit in second place in their division, just behind No. 2 University of Akron.