Colombia eliminate United States in Olympic qualifier


Two more sign on to SAFC from North Carolina

FC Dallas cruise past DC United

FC Dallas has continued to rebound from their derby loss as they managed to record their first road win of the year on Saturday. Dallas managed a big 3-0 win over DC United at RFK Stadium, in which they never looked troubled.

It took just 14 minutes for FC Dallas to be able to open the scoring as an error from DC United let them in. Taylor Kemp and Kofi Opare failed to communicate well, allowing Max Urruti to jump in and steal possession, setting up Michael Barrios who ran at goal and curled in a shot past the keeper.

The visitors kept on attacking as they went for the match and they added their second goal in the 28th minute of the match. Mauro Diaz was able to send a ball in for Barrios , who seemed to have too heavy a first touch but he ran down the ball quickly, keeping it alive and shot past the keeper.

That was all the action in the first half, as FC Dallas continued to control possession but DC United were lifting defensively. Despite that defensive lift from DC they just could not make any real threat on the FC Dallas goal, as the half ended with FC Dallas 2-0 up.

The third goal came early in the second half, with Urruti getting the goal just seven minutes in to the half. Fabian Castillo sent in a cross for Urruti, who played the ball down, despite heavy pressure from DC United, and buried the chance, just getting inside the post.

In the 64th minute DC United had their best chance of the match when Matt edges slipped over allowing the opportunity. Fabian Espindola was able to chest the ball down for Lamar Neagle who shot on the run but was denied by a Chris Seitz save.

The 66th minute saw an even better chance for DC United, after they were awarded a penalty, which allowed Espindola to step up only for Seitz to read the shot and make the save. That would be as close as DC United would get, with the match finishing 3-0 to FC Dallas.

Two trialists sign on to SAFC

San Antonio FC added two trialists to their full time squad as they announced the signings of goalkeeper Lee Johnston and Austin Dunker on Friday afternoon. Dunker’s signing had been expected for several weeks after his name was mentioned in a USL article, while Johnston appeared in goal during the second half of Wednesday’s Alamo Derby.

Dunker is a familiar face to SAFC coach, Darren Powell, having played under him at Elon University before playing PDL last season for Seattle Sounders’ Under 23s. That was the first time Dunker played his club soccer outside of North Carolina, having spent time at Carolina Dynamo while at Elon.

At Elon, Dunker had a solid collegiate career, playing under Powell from 2011-2014 and being placed right in to an important role. In his freshman year Dunker won Southern Conference All-Freshman honors before earning All-Conference Second Team honors in 2013.

Dunker will add some versatility to the left hand side, with it clear that Powell will like to play with wingers. While restricted to the left, Dunker is able to play both defense and midfield to add some versatility and could be a useful option off the bench for SAFC.

Johnston played over 15 minutes on Wednesday in SAFC’s match against Corinthians FC SA, coming on for Matt Cardone. While likely to be just the third choice keeper on the team his youth provides well for the future of the team, and in Wednesday’s match he did well with what chance he had.

Like Dunker, SAFC represents Johnston’s first professional club, after he played his collegiate soccer at the University of Pittsburgh and West Virginia. Johnston started at Pittsburgh, before transferring after his Freshman year to West Virginia.

Double wins close out season for Reagan

It may be spring break but varsity soccer continued on Tuesday night with the final matches of the regular season for a number of teams. After just keeping hold of their number one ranking last week, Reagan’s boys team managed to finish the season on a high with a 1-0 win over Lee at Comalander Stadium after the girls teams managed an 8-0 win for Reagan over Lee.

It was a tight match, with neither side really controlling things in the first half, as it was a tight midfield performance. Lee perhaps found the key to upsetting Reagan, after potentially scouting last week’s match, as they put in a strong defensive effort, frustrating the Rattlers.

That created a phenomenally tight first-half, which neither side was able to manage a goal, as the half ended scoreless. Lee’s tactically set up seemed determined to create that result, and the second half, saw them open up a little more.

But just 11 minutes in to the second half, some great solo work gave Reagan the lead that they had been working hard for. The great work came from Emilio Villarreal who created the space and unleashed an impressive shot to open the scoring.

That goal proved enough as the Rattlers stepped up their defensive performance against Lee, to really see the match fade out from there. The win should see Reagan hold the number one ranking as the playoffs start after a week off.

The girls team managed a big 8-0 victory over Lee, dominating the match in hot conditions at Comalander Stadium. That gave Reagan the district championship as they head off to the playoffs in great form.

Just three minutes in to the match Reagan had the lead as Tia Pearcy was able to send a through ball for Taylor Olson. That allowed her a simple finish, left one-on-one with the keeper and she buried it to give the Rattlers the lead.

There were two goals in three minutes in the middle of the half, the first through Olson, who this time was played in by Gaby Galan. Olson then completed her hat-trick three minutes later as she did the work on her own to make it 3-0.
Late in the half Reagan had two more goals, the first to Cassie Leony who put a simple chance away before Ariel Modisette finished the half with another goal. That gave Reagan a 5-0 lead at the half and they weren’t done yet.

There were three more goals in the second half, the first in came 10 minutes in through Lauren Anderson who did well to get the goal. With 13 minutes to play Bethany Perez put a seventh in before Julia Thiel wrapped up the 8-0 win in the final minute of the match.

San Antonio FC claim tight win in first ever Alamo Derby

The first ever San Antonio derby took place on Wednesday afternoon when San Antonio FC continued their pre-season preparations against Corinthians FC of San Antonio. It was a hard fought match but SAFC claimed the victory 2-1 at Toyota Field.

SAFC struck first after a foul in the box allowed Jason Johnson to step up and take the penalty, he continued his good form, making no mistake with the effort. That forced Corinthians FC SA to respond and the immediately went on the attack.

In the 17th minute they had their goal back after some fluid play allowed Corinthians to move the ball in to the box. That saw the ball fall to Juan Carlos Cacho who made no mistake levelling the scores easily at one.

Only a great save from Tepa kept it level at one in the death of the half as Sebastien Thuriere found space on the edge of the area. That allowed him to shoot but it was well kept out by Tepa at full stretch, letting Corinthians FC SA off the hook, keeping it 1-1 at the break.

The two teams really trading periods of domination, but it was SAFC who had the stronger opportunities at goal in the match. Despite that the Corinthians FC SA defense was strong and they were looking dangerous on the counter.

The changes came on the hour mark with a practical line change coming from SAFC while the Corinthians bench saw some, all be it less, movement. That gave SAFC an advantage, as their larger and professional bench started to give them more of the ball.

In the 61st minute SAFC had a golden opportunity when Ferijo Okiomah was left wide open for a free header. But again Tepa was able to prove his worth to Corinthians, making a superb save to keep his side level.

A stray pass gave SAFC a good opportunity three minutes later as Rafael Castillo gathered it in. That allowed him to set up Okiomah who took a powerful shot from the edge of the area but his effort went wide, keeping it 1-1.

As the match wore on, SAFC were proving to be the better side, with more players, deeper in to pre-season, and a professional side. Yet despite that they just could not break down a stern Corinthians defense.

SAFC finally broke through in the 81st minute a mix up at the back saw Tepa come out and lose the ball. That saw the ball fall to a trialist who was able to simply walk the ball in to the back of the net.

The game got especially feisty late in the match, when Manuel Vidrio was forced to watch the rest of the match from the stands. He walked half-way on to the pitch to protest the officials’ decision making and was deservedly sent off, ending the match with an odd atmosphere, and a 2-1 win for SAFC.

Houston embarrass woeful FC Dallas

Undefeated preseason continues as SAFC destroy Dallas City

San Antonio FC continued their undefeated pre-season as they cruised to a 5-0 victory over NPSL side, Dallas City FC. It was the second loss for Dallas City in San Antonio in the past 12 months after they fell to Corinthians FC SA in league play in June.

The match saw SAFC coach Darren Powell use a different starting XI yet again, and his fourth formation in as many pre-season matches. This match saw SAFC line up with an almost diamond 4-4-2, although Manolo Sanchez played back as a second striker behind Jason Johnson and Victor Arajuo would often come forward for a 4-3-3 style while on the ball. That allowed Powell to see how that strike pairing would work, and he should have been pleased with the results.

San Antonio was dominant from the very opening whistle, but in the early stages they were proving wasteful. At least two genuine chances fell to SAFC in the opening ten minutes but they just could not finish those opportunities.

But in the 15th minute that was all forgotten as Jason Johnson continued his good form, scoring his second SAFC goal. It was a reverse of the first goal in club history when Sanchez was able to play through Johnson, who made no mistake applying the finish.

After some more chances went away for SAFC they were finally able to double their lead just before the half-hour mark. In an encouraging sign for the season ahead the goal came from a set piece as Victor Araujo sent in a free kick for Steve McCarthy who buried the chance easily, continuing SAFC’s good set-piece form in pre-season.

SAFC’s first half poor return rate continued throughout the rest of the half, as two more chances came and went begging. That forced San Antonio to settle for a 2-0 lead at the break, which could easily have been double that score.

Powell rang the changes in the second half, bringing on a number of trialists, which lead to a slow start for San Antonio in the second. It took until the hour mark for SAFC to add their third goal of the match, and again it was the Johnson/Sanchez combination paying off as Johnson had his brace.

It didn’t take long for SAFC to make it four when Carlos Alvarez was able to set up Sanchez, who made no mistake, burying the opportunity. With 15minutes to play, and with such a commanding lead, Powell was able to make a hockey style line change, switching out almost the entire side, every starter who was left on the park, to try more combinations.

With less than 15 minutes to play, a foul in the box allowed a familiar sight in San Antonio soccer as Rafael Castillo stepped up. As has been the case for much of his time at Toyota Field, he made no mistake, burying it to seal the 5-0 win.

Churchill stun Rattlers and manage draw

Reagan may have given away the number one ranking in the San Antonio Soccer News boys’ varsity ranking after they were forced to settle for a 2-2 draw with Churchill at Blossom on Tuesday night, in an entertaining match.

The Rattlers started the match well as they went on the attack from the opening whistle and in the eighth minute they had their goal. It came from a ball from Emiliano Cuadra who was able to set up Shane Malone who made no mistake and put Reagan 1-0 up.

That forced Churchill to respond and they did, going for the match to try and find a goal to pull themselves back in to the match. It took just three minutes for Churchill to find the goal, which was well worked, surprising the Rattlers.

That result would stand through to half-time and the second half started just as tight, with the two sides working hard to keep possession. Neither team was very successful at that as the two teams gave away possession too much, breaking up flow and making it difficult for either side to get chances.

Churchill stunned the number one team in San Antonio with 13 minutes to play after the Rattlers gave away a corner. That allowed Churchill to send in a perfect delivery that was headed home comfortably to give the Chargers the lead.

That forced Reagan to respond and three minutes later a corner of their own allowed them that opportunity. Justin Sukow was able to send the ball in, which perfectly found Chaise Thiel who headed home the goal to level the scores.

While the Rattlers pushed in the final ten minutes of the match as they looked to get the winning goal, but they just could not find it. The draw helps out Churchill, who want to try and push in to the San Antonio Soccer News rankings.

FC Dallas get season off to perfect start

FC Dallas, one of the hotly favored teams for the 2016 Major League Soccer title, got their season off to a perfect start on Sunday afternoon. FC Dallas cruised to a 2-0 victory over Philadelphia Union at Toyota Stadium to get things started.

Major League Soccer 2016 Week 1: FC Dallas v Philadelphia Union-slide0
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
FC Dallas players celebrate their opening goal

Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

It was a dominant performance from FC Dallas, and they could have opened the scoring in the 13th minute. Max Urruti was able to get a shot away after Atiba Harris sent the ball in for Urruti at the top of the box, but was denied by a great Andre Blake save.

That was only the start from FC Dallas as they had another opportunity just three minutes later when Fabian Castillo got free at the top of the box. Castillo was played in after a Michael Barrios was forced wide, forcing him to lay it off for Castillo whose shot was blocked by Fabinho’s chest.

In the 22nd minute FC Dallas had their opening goal of the match as Carlos Gruezo stole possession from a sliding challenge, falling to Kellyn Acosta. That allowed Acosta to send the ball for Mauro Diaz who sent the ball to Castillo who slid the ball underneath the goalkeeper.

That goal would hold through to half-time as FC Dallas continued to control proceedings and they came out determined to get a second. A corner was sent on to goal by Maynor Figueroa who was able to get a header away but Blake tracked the ball well and made a great save.

But the second half quickly became a tight midfield battle, as Philadelphia tried, and failed, to get control of the match and have chances. Dallas kept control of much of the possession but struggled to create clear chances, keeping the match tight.

The second goal finally did come in the 79th minute and again it was Diaz who provided the assist as he stole the ball from Fabinho. That allowed him to set up Urruti who was able to finish the chance, running on to it and hitting it in stride, sending it home off the bar.