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U.S. U-15 Boys’ National Team Defeats Costa Rica in Copa Mexico de Naciones


MEXICO CITY (June 19, 2012) – Sebastian Elney and DJ Villegas led the way as the U.S. defeated Costa Rica 3-1 in the Copa Mexico de Naciones in Mexico City, Mexico.

The U.S. came out strong, scoring an early goal in the 17th minute when a corner kick was blocked by a Costa Rican defender. The ball fell to Elney, who slotted it home. Andres Mendoza equalized for Costa Rica in the 20th minute, when a giveaway in the back led to a quick counterattack by the young Ticos. Mendoza ran in alone against JT Marcinowski, hitting a hard shot from 18 yards as Marcinowski stepped up to close him down.

Just three minutes later, the U.S. pulled ahead once again as Mukwelle Akale dribbled around a Costa Rican defender and took a hard shot on goal. Costa Rica goalkeeper Kevin Monterrey Briones made the save, parrying the ball into the center of the box. Villegas ran onto the rebound and finished from close range.

Villegas added the third and final goal in the 68th minute after a series of one-touch passing at the top of the box led to Coy Craft getting in one-on-one with Monterrey Briones. Craft’s shot was saved and the rebound fell to Villegas, who scored with a low shot from 12 yards out.

The U.S. next faces Colombia on June 20. With four points after two matches, the U.S. must win against Colombia to advance, as the teams are tied on points but Colombia holds a better goal differential.

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