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North Carolina Fusion Tops CASL Chelsea FC Academy for First Win in Finals Week

MILWAUKEE (July 12, 2011) – North Carolina Fusion defeated Atlantic division rival CASL Chelsea FC Academy 1-0 in their second group match of 2011 Finals Week thanks to Warren Marshall’s lone goal in the 66th minute.  

The Fusion took three points from the match, positioning themselves well for the Group 2 finale. They head into their final group match on July 14 level on four points with their opponent, PA Classics. CASL will be looking to earn their first points of the tournament against Real Salt Lake AZ, who have tied their first two matches and remain in the hunt for the championship match.

“It was a hard-fought win,” said North Carolina Fusion head coach Chris Little. “It was a game with two good teams who are obviously in the same division. We have a lot of respect for each other. It was a back and forth game with a lot of chances in the first half, and in the second half it got a bit tight and tense. We managed to get the goal off and it was a great goal. It was a great finish, a goal worthy of winning the game.”

The opening minutes of the match saw a CASL side determined to open the scoring early. In the second minute, Eric O’Brien had the first shot of the game when he attempted a long ball from the right corner. The next minute, forward Fernando Castellanos hit a hard cross to Yanni Hachem whose shot went just right of the goal.

The Fusion tried to capitalize on a CASL foul in the seventh minute that resulted in a free kick from about 20 yards out. The shot was a rocket that deflected off CASL defenders and went out of bounds.

In the 18th minute, CASL attacked again when Hachem passed to O’Brien who took a chance from the right side of the goal, seeing the ball go just high.

The Fusion had a close chance in the 30th minute when Marco Sunol dribbled by the CASL defenders with his quick footwork and released a shot towards goal, sending CASL goalkeeper Sam Williams sprawling out to get a touch on the ball and keeping it out of goal.

CASL responded at the end of the half in the 36th minute when Hachem received a through pass and had nothing but space between him and the goalkeeper, but his shot was hit softly and Fusion goalkeeper John Brooks was able to easily scoop it up.

The game stayed even in the beginning of the second half as both teams looked for good passing plays and scoring chances. In the 62nd minute, CASL defender Michael Hinkson showcased his speed, pushing the ball quickly up the right side and dumping it off to Hachem, who earned a corner that was eventually cleared.

The Fusion finally broke through in 66th minute when Candido Garcia sped past his defenders and slipped a perfectly-weighted ball to Marshall, who hit a low shot into the left corner past a diving Williams.

Seven minutes later, CASL nearly responded when O’Brien received the ball in front of goal, but he waited a split-second too long and allowed Williams to snatch the ball off of his feet. That would prove to be the last dangerous chance of the game as North Carolina Fusion were able to hold firm to their lead and their composure, despite the game getting chippy in the waning minutes.

 - U.S. Soccer Development Academy Match Report -

Match: CASL Chelsea FC Academy vs. North Carolina Fusion
Date: July 12, 2011
Competition: 2011 Development Academy Finals Week; U-15/16 - Group 2
Venue: Pat Jones Field; Uihlein Soccer Park
Kickoff: 3 p.m. CT
Weather: 73 degrees, cloudy

Scoring Summary:  1  2  F 
CASL Chelsea FC Academy   
North Carolina Fusion 

NCF – Warren Marshall (Candido Garcia)        66th minute  

CASL: 18-Samuel Williams; 42-Michael Hinkson, 44-Nicholas Williams, 47-Griffin Hefner, 32-Andrew Barber (41-Davis Robinson, 55); 40-Andrew Park (43-William Thompson, 57), 39-Alexander Olofson, 35-Tyler Carroll (36-Kellen Foster, 41); 37-Yanni Hachem (45-Josh Hong, 68), 34-Fernando Castellanos, 46-Eric O’Brien
Subs not used: 1-Everett McCord
Head coach: Carlos Somoano

NCF: 1-John Brooks; 7-Adam Storm, 32-Alex Rosenbower, 6-Mason Billings, 2-Erik Casterline; 16-Samuel McBride, 17-Taylor Adler, 8-Warren Marshall, 13-Brandt Bronico, 19-Candido Garcia; 10-Marco Sunol
Subs not used: 00-Jefferson Caldwell, 9-Hudson Owens, 12-Stephen Long, 14-Craver Stamey, 15-Matthew Vlachos, 18-Andrew Plant 88-Teige Arnott
Head Coach: Chris Little

Stats Summary: CASL / NCF
Shots: 8 / 5
Shots on Goal: 3 / 5
Saves: 4 / 3
Corner Kicks: 4 / 2
Fouls: 7 / 10
Offside: 1 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
CASL – Griffin Heffner (caution)         70th minute
NCF – Samuel McBride (caution)         74
CASL – William Thompson (sent off)  80+2

Referee: Josh Whitson
Assistant Referee 1: Aaron Hernandez
Assistant Referee 2: Yevgenly Mednikor
Fourth Official: Andrew Bigelow Man of the Match: Warren Marshall