After finishing atop their group at the MLS NEXT Fest the Real Salt Lake Academy U-17s booked their ticket to the Generation Adidas Cup, going undefeated for the second-straight year at the California-based tournament.
The team started the three-match tournament trading punches in the penalty shootout with the New York Red Bulls. The two sides finished the regulation period tied 1-1 after forward Brice Miller found the equalizer, assisted by Gabriel Oksanen. In order to determine the recipient of the extra point the Claret-and-Cobalt were forced to stand their ground during seven rounds of the penalty shootout, with Blake Kelly making two saves to secure the second point.
The following day Real Salt Lake put on a display of offensive dominance with a 3-2 victory over FC Cincinnati. Miller scored his second goal of the tournament in the 34th minute, while Carlos Castrejon found the back of the net in the 53rd minute to double the lead. The team capped off the day with a forced own goal from Cincinnati in the 56th minute to earn the win and take all three points.
In the team’s final match of the MLS NEXT Fest the U-17s defeated Nashville SC 2-1, guaranteeing them a spot at the 2023 Generation Adidas Cup. After suffering an early deficit Miller was able to equalize in the 35th minute, his third goal in as many games. Seeking the go-ahead goal, defender Gershon Henry found fellow defender Nick Nobles for a cheeky finish and the eventual game winner in the 83rd minute for the 2-1 victory.
The team will now return to regular season competition on January 23 at Sacramento United before returning home on February 5 to host Silicon Valley SA.