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Met Oval Seek Fourth Straight Academy Win Opposite FC Westchester; Wolves to Defend First-Place Ranking Against Crew


CHICAGO (April 4, 2008) -- Following three consecutive wins, Metropolitan Oval’s U-15/16 Academy team (Brooklyn, N.Y.) travel this weekend to face off against conference rivals FC Westchester (Scarsdale, N.Y.). FC Westchester returns to the field after a 2-1 win last weekend versus South Central Premier (New Haven, Conn.) to compete in their first conference game against Met Oval.

Met Oval stands in first place in the Northeast Conference with an aggregate record of 5-1-1 after two shutouts in last weekend’s Academy matches. After their debut at the February showcase, Met Oval has amassed a clean conference record of 4-0-1. With a total of 10 goals scored and only five goals scored against, Met Oval credits their success to the team’s overall unity.

“The unity as a team is one of our strengths,” said Met Oval coach Giovanni Savarese. “I feel individually we’re becoming better and I think every game we’ve played so far has been challenging and has helped to improve the players.”

As Met Oval prepares for this weekend’s match, Savarese expects to see the players take their skills from the practice field to game day.

“We come together as a team and we try to have fun and try to implement the things we worked on during practice,” said Savarese. “If I put new players in the game to play I look for improvement from them. Winning is the second expectation for me.”

Standing fifth in the conference, FC Westchester hosts their first home game at SUNY Purchase following several weekends on the road. After a rough three-loss start with the Academy, FC Westchester has rebounded with a 2-1-2 record in their last five games and look to secure another win this weekend.

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The U-17/18 Columbus Crew (Columbus, Ohio) challenge the Michigan Wolves (Farmington Hills, Mich.) following victories last weekend against Carmel United Soccer Club (Carmel, Ind.) and Empire United SA (Rochester, N.Y.). The Wolves look to continue their four-game winning streak this weekend.

With a conference record of 2-1 and an overall Academy record of 5-3-1, the Crew stands in second place behind the Wolves in the Great Lakes Conference. Five players on the Crew’s roster have tallied at least two goals each: Nick Blevins (3 goals), Joey Haught (3 goals), David Schade (2 goals), Mike Green (2 goals) and Ben Speas (2 goals). The Crew has also demonstrated a strong defensive unit, posting four shutouts in their first nine games.

The Wolves have posted a 5-1-1 record with their only loss coming against the Baltimore Bays SC (Baltimore, Md.) and their only draw against New York Red Bulls (Secaucus, N.J.), which are tied for first in the Mid-Atlantic Conference. Center forward Colin Rolfe anchors the offense, recording 10 of the team’s 16 goals, while central defender Aaron Rosenberg reinforces the back line.

“Colin Rolfe has been playing very well all year,” said Wolves coach Dave Hicklin. “He scored a couple hat tricks this past weekend against the Internationals [Cleveland, Ohio] and the CASA [Cleveland, Ohio]. And Aaron Rosenberg is a central defender and he’s been doing an exceptional job.”

Facing off against the second place Crew, the Wolves hope to continue their impressive season as they approach this weekend’s competition.

“We haven’t seen them play, but they are having a good season,” said Hicklin. “So I’m looking forward to a good competitive game.”

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The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team will be traveling to the Chicago area for Development Academy matches against the Chicago Magic on Saturday, April 5 and the Chicago Fire Academy on Sunday, April 6.

U.S. Under-17 head coach Wilmer Cabrera will split his 34 available players into two teams for the weekend’s matches, with one team taking on the U-15/16 Chicago Fire Academy on Sunday at 11 a.m. CT, and the other battling the U-17/18 Fire squad at 1 p.m. CT. Both games will take place at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill.

On Saturday, the National Team will match up against the Chicago Magic U-15/16 Academy team at 11 a.m. at Northwestern University, while the older squad takes on the Magic U-17/18s at 1 p.m. CT.  Both the Fire and the Magic played to a scoreless draw with the U.S. on the weekend of March 8-9 in Bradenton, Fla.

“I think they were very competitive games in March,” said U.S. assistant coach Oscar Pareja. “Now going to Chicago is going to be difficult. We respect what the Chicago Fire and the Magic are doing with their youth programs. Playing in the stadium is also a great opportunity for both teams, and just one of the things that makes this program unique.”

The U.S. Under-17 ‘92s are coming off a four-game tournament in Montaigu, France, where they defeated eventual-champion England, 1-0, and China, 3-1. The U.S. fell to Japan and Italy to come away with a 2-2 record in the tournament. Midfielder Carlos Martinez led the U.S. attack, scoring three goals in four games, and is one of 17 players who traveled to France that will take part in this weekend’s matches. Additionally, four players on the Academy roster – Bryan Dominguez, Gregory Garza, Zac MacMath and Kofi Sarkodie – were part of the U.S. team at the 2007 FIFA Under-17 World Cup in South Korea.





U-15/16 AGE GROUP

Saturday, April 5, 2008
Home vs. Away
Chivas USA vs. Pateadores
FC Westchester vs. Met Oval
Seacoast United vs. FC Greater Boston
Carmel United Soccer Club vs. CASA
Albertson Soccer Club vs. B/W Gottschee
Chicago Magic vs. U.S. Youth National Team
Cal Odyssey vs. Real So Cal
Sockers FC vs. FC Milwaukee
Real Colorado vs. San Diego Surf Soccer
De Anza Force vs. Arsenal FC
Colorado Rapids vs. Crossfire
Colorado Rush vs. Nomads Soccer Club
PA Classics vs. Match Fit Academy
FC Delco vs. PDA
Vardar vs. Crew
New York Red Bulls vs. D.C. United
Michigan Wolves vs. Ohio Elite Soccer Academy
Baltimore Bays vs. Potomac
Miami FC Kendall vs. Clearwater Chargers SC
North Meck vs. South Charlotte SA
LAFC vs. Irvine Strikers
Empire United vs. Internationals

Sunday, April 6, 2008
Home vs. Away
FC Delco vs. Match Fit Academy
Michigan Wolves vs. Crew
Real Colorado vs. Nomads Soccer Club
Vardar vs. Ohio Elite Soccer Academy
De Anza Force vs. Real So Cal
Schulz Academy vs. Clearwater Chargers SC
B/W Gottschee vs. FC Westchester
Colorado Rush vs. San Diego Surf Soccer
Chicago Fire vs. U.S. Youth National Team
Cal Odyssey vs. Arsenal FC
Oakwood Soccer Club vs. South Central Premier
PA Classics vs. PDA
New York Red Bulls vs. Potomac
Baltimore Bays vs. D.C. United

For the complete Academy U-15/16 match schedule, including venues and kick-off times visit:
http://www.t7sports.com:8080/2005/k122631.htm

U-17/18 AGE GROUP

Saturday, April 5, 2008
Home vs. Away
Chivas USA vs. Pateadores
Baltimore Bays vs. Potomac
FC Westchester vs. Met Oval
Seacoast United vs. FC Greater Boston
Carmel United Soccer Club vs. CASA
Albertson Soccer Club vs. B/W Gottschee
Chicago Magic vs. U.S. Youth National Team
Cal Odyssey vs. Real So Cal
Sockers FC vs. FC Milwaukee
Colorado Rush vs. Nomads Soccer Club
PA Classics vs. Match Fit Academy
Real Colorado vs. San Diego Surf Soccer
FC Delco vs. PDA
Vardar vs. Crew
New York Red Bulls vs. D.C. United
De Anza Force vs. Arsenal FC
Colorado Rapids vs. Crossfire
Scott Gallagher vs. Metro United
Michigan Wolves vs. Ohio Elite Soccer Academy
Miami FC Kendall vs. Clearwater Chargers SC
North Meck vs. South Charlotte SA
Empire United vs. Internationals
LAFC vs. Irvine Strikers

Sunday, April 6, 2008
Home vs. Away
FC Delco vs. Match Fit Academy
Michigan Wolves vs. Crew
Schulz Academy vs. Clearwater Chargers SC
Vardar vs. Ohio Elite Soccer Academy
De Anza Force vs. Real So Cal
Real Colorado vs. Nomads Soccer Club
B/W Gottschee vs. FC Westchester
Colorado Rush vs. San Diego Surf Soccer
Chicago Fire vs. U.S. Youth National Team
Cal Odyssey vs. Arsenal FC
Baltimore Bays vs. D.C. United
Oakwood Soccer Club vs. South Central Premier
PA Classics vs. PDA
New York Red Bulls vs. Potomac

For the complete Academy U-17/18 match schedule, including venues and kick-off times visit:
http://www.t7sports.com:8080/2005/k122682.htm

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