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Across the Academy

Across the Academy is a weekly summary of news related to the U.S. Soccer Development Academy, highlighting Academy clubs, current and former players, youth national team activity and media coverage of the Academy. Across the Academy will be available for the duration of the 2011-12 season.

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U.S. Soccer Development Academy

Juan Agudelo and Bill Hamid Named to U.S. MNT Roster: Former New York Red Bulls Academy product Juan Agudelo and former D.C. United Academy goalkeeper Bill Hamid have been named to the U.S. Men’s National Team roster to train ahead of the team’s matches against Honduras on Oct. 8 and Ecuador on Oct. 11. Agudelo has 13 caps for the full team, with many of them coming during the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup. Hamid has yet to appear in a match for the MNT, but is in camp for the second time along with veteran goalkeepers Tim Howard and Nick Rimando.

Two Academy Players Named to U.S. Futsal National Team: Pateadores’ Casey Macias and Lucas Stauffer of Shattuck-St. Mary’s have joined the U.S. Futsal National Team for a week-long camp Sept. 24-Oct. 1. The Futsal National Team is in the beginning stages of preparations for the tournament that will qualify teams to the 2012 FIFA Futsal World Cup, which will be held Nov. 2-18 in Thailand.

Derby Weekend: Of the 34 divisional matches this coming weekend, six of those games feature rivalries that could be considered derbies, with cross-town opponents facing off in California, Texas and Washington. In the SoCal Division, Strikers FC takes on Pateadores in Irvine, Chivas USA hosts LA Galaxy in Carson and Nomads SC faces San Diego Surf in San Diego. Meanwhile, in Houston, the Texas Rush plays host to Texans SC Houston while Crossfire Premier and the Seattle Sounders FC battle it out in Seattle.

Eight Academy Players See Reserve Team Minutes: FC Dallas, Houston Dynamo and Chivas USA all used Development Academy players in Reserve League matches during the past week, with former Academy players Will Bruin (Houston Dynamo) and Zarek Valentin (Chivas USA) also joining the mix. Eric Gonzales and Ben Spencer both started for the Chivas USA reserves, with Stevie Rodriguez, Mark Delgado and Brian Kennedy also seeing playing time for the Goats. Michael Ambrose saw time as a sub for FC Dallas while Bradley Bourgeois played 14 minutes for the Houston Dynamo.

National Notes:

  • Almost 150 goals were scored in 42 games over the course of the weekend. 
  • A total of 27 younger athletes played up with an older team from their Academy club. 
  • Four teams went undefeated, with Arsenal FC and McLean Youth Soccer each posting two wins and two ties, Texans SC Houston winning twice and Weston FC earning four victories.

West Conference:

  • Three hat-tricks were registered over the weekend and two were scored by West Conference teams. Brody Huitema scored three for the Vancouver Whitecaps while Paul Arriola also scored three times for Arsenal FC. 
  • Only the Vancouver Whitecaps and California Development Academy have faced off in a divisional match so far this year, with Vancouver earning a win in the U-15/16 age group and a tie in the U-17/18 age group.

Central Conference:

  • Texas Rush kicked off its Academy schedule after being the only team in the Texas Division to rest the week before, earning two draws in their first divisional game for each age group. 
  • The Texas Division is the only group in which every team has played in at least one divisional game.

South Conference:

  • Weston FC went undefeated last weekend, with both age groups winning their matches against Richmond Kickers and Virginia Rush AJ Auxerre. 
  • Eddy Milienn posted the lone hat trick for the South Conference, scoring three times for Weston FC against Virginia Rush AJ Auxerre. 
  • Virginia Rush AJ Auxerre had the most instances of athletes playing with an older age group as five different U-15/16 players featured in two U-17/18 matches.


Week 3 Player of the Week: Daniel Garcia – Midfielder, FC Dallas

Daniel Garcia has been a consistent contributor to the FC Dallas midfield and this past weekend added to his Academy goals tally with the game-winning goals in the team’s 3-2 win against Andromeda FC. Garcia played 84 minutes in the match and has also appeared in three MLS Reserve League games for FC Dallas.

Referee of the Week: Michael Samaan
Michael Samaan, a Grade 6 referee from D.C./Virginia, earned high marks on Saturday, September 24, during the game between Virginia Rush AJ Auxerre and Kendall SC U-17/18. Samaan has officiated almost 40 Academy matches during the past two years and attended the 2010 Winter Showcase. He also serves the USL Pro, PDL, and W-League games in his area.

Ruben Luna Scores for FC Dallas:
Ruben Luna, who was named Development Academy Player of the Year in 2009, featured in FC Dallas’ CONCACAF Champions League match against Panamanian side Tauro FC. The team from Texas fell 5-3 at Estadio Rommel Fernandez, but Luna scored two of the team’s three goals.

Four of the Top Five NCAA Division I Scorers Former Academy Players: Of the top 11 goalscorers in the NCAA Division I, five of them hail from Development Academy clubs including four of the Top Five. Former LA Galaxy forward Gyasi Zardes leads the pack overall with 11 goals. He is followed by Andrew Wenger from PA Classics with 10 goals. Will Bates from Richmond Strikers and Chandler Hoffman from Birmingham United each have nine goals while Vardar’s Casey Townsend rounds out the former Academy contingent with eight tallies.


  • Travis Clark posts a video of former Crossfire Premier player Kellyn Rowe scoring a long-range goal for UCLA – travismclark.com 
  • 24 Under 24 takes a look at Juan Agudelo’s support system – MLSsoccer.com 
  • MLSsoccer.com talks to Jimmy Conrad about changes in the Chivas USA Academy program – MLSsoccer.com 
  • FC Dallas recaps the previous weekend’s results – FCDallas.com 
  • Mike Woitalla discusses club evaluations – Soccer America 
  • Charles Boehm interviews Tony Lepore about training centers and player identification – Potomac Soccer Wire

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