Academy Dominates In Return To Action

4-1 and 7-0 wins in California signal a strong start to 2011 for the Sounders FC U18 and U16 teams.

It was another successful weekend for the Sounders FC Academy as they played their first USSDA matches of 2011.

After a successful start to the season that saw the U18s go 8-1-3 while the U16 team was 8-2-2 in 2010, the Academy’s kicked off 2011 with convincing road victories over California Development Academy in Del Oro, California.  The U18 team used two goals from Sean Okoli and Chase Hanson and Glenn Paden added two more for a 4-1 win while the U16s scored three goals in the first 11 minutes en route to a 7-0 drubbing of CDA.

After a scoreless first half, Okoli tallied his seventh goal in USSDA play on a give-and-go with Aaron Kovar in the 54th minute, with Okoli finishing on a first-time shot from 16 yards out.

In the 62nd minute, Kovar found Hanson out wide, where Hanson beat a couple of defenders and blasted a shot from 25 yards out.  The shot took a deflection and caught the CDA goalkeeper off-guard to give Seattle a 2-0 lead.

Okoli added to the lead in the 67th minute on a penalty kick.  Darwin Jones beat his defender in the box before being taken down to earn the penalty and Okoli converted for the 3-0 lead.

Seattle put the game well out of reach in the 85th minute when Dominique Dismuke slid a ball in from the right side to an on-coming Paden, who finished for the 4-0 edge.  CDA scored in the 86th minute, but by then the game was out of reach and Seattle finished with the 4-1 win.

In U16 action, Seattle didn’t waste any time asserting their authority on the match.  In the match’s second minute, Jordan Thompson got Seattle on the board on a play started by a precision pass from Ian Lange.

His driving pass to Ike Crook got Seattle out on the run and Crook touched a pass to Stefan Bangsund, who touched another nice ball to Thompson.  The midfielder was then off to the races and finished his shot for the 1-0 lead.

They weren’t content with that early lead though and quickly doubled the advantage in the fourth minute.  Crook played an angled ball to Jesse Klug on a breakaway and Klug finished with ease inside the far post for the 2-0 lead.

After a strong build-up Thompson added a second goal in the 11th minute, taking a back-heel pass from Crook and slotting it past the keeper for the 3-0 lead, bringing the crowd to its feet.

Things calmed down, though Seattle continued to control the run of play.  In the 37th minute, they added another goal when Jordan Schweitzer sent a long ball to Thompson on the edge of the penalty area.  He cut the ball across the goal to Bangsund, who knocked it home for the 4-0 lead going into the half.

However the second half was no different as Seattle got a long-range goal from Austin Sweeney in the 63rd minute, a top corner shot from Odason Pelogi in the 66th minute and a left-footed curler from Chad Radulovich in the 76th minute to blast CDA 7-0.  Seattle outshot the California team 20-3 to earn the win.

The U18 and U16 sides will take on Crossfire Premier on Sunday at Lake Washington High School.  The U18 game starts at 11 with the U16 game to follow at 1:30.