The Real Salt Lake Academy travelled to Southern California this weekend for a double game week against Pateadores and Strikers FC which featured a battle of the top-two teams in the Southwest Division against Pateadores. The U-17s won its match against Pateadores 2-0 before drawing with Strikers 1-1, while the U-19 group fell 3-0 to the division leaders before topping Strikers FC 3-1 a day later.
In the Saturday matches, the U-17s found goals from MFs Zachary Farnsworth and Dalton Gibson on either side of halftime to secure the victory and close the gap on division leaders Pateadores. Farnsworth has now scored three goals in 14 matches building from his call-up to U.S. Youth National Team Camp by Director Tab Ramos in mid-December. GK David Ochoa played the full 90 minutes in goal for the U-17s, earning the shutout.
In the second game against Pateadores, the U-19s fell in a lopsided 3-0 decision, missing a chance to close the point gap at the top of the Southwest division.
Against Strikers FC on Sunday, the U-17s drew 1-1 with FW Julian Vasquez scoring the lone goal of the match, his fourth of the year before the U-19s topped Strikers 3-1. In the second match of the weekend for the U-19s, FW Sebastian Soto ended his two-game goal-drought when he scored his 24th goal of the season while MF Luis Arriaga added two goals in the victory, scoring his fourth and fifth goals of the season in the win.
After this weekend’s matches, the U-17s now sit three points behind Pateadores having played two fewer matches. The U-17s remain in second place in the Southwest division points standings, holding a 9-2-4 record (31 points) having scored 38 goals in 15 USSDA matches this season. However, the RSL U-17s sit atop the division standings due to beating Pateadores.
After splitting the weekend’s results in California, the U-19s no sit with a record of 11-3-1 (34 points) and remain in second place in the Southwest Division, six points below leaders Pateadores.
The Academy returned home on Sunday for most of the U-19 group to feature in a scrimmage match against three different RSL lineups, a preseason scrimmage that ultimately ended in a 3-1 result in favor of the first team. The Academy side got its lone goal from Lyles Mezine when his curling effort found the top corner of the net to root then-GK Andrew Putna to his spot.
The U-17 side will look ahead to a matchup with Albion SC on February 3 as the U-19s will spend the weekend without a match due to Albion SC not currently carrying a U-19 contingent. The match against Albion SC will kick off at 11:30 a.m. at the Zions Bank Training Facility in Herriman.