BRADENTON, Fla. (Via Super Y League) – Sebastian Smith scored a pair of goals for a second successive contest as Miramar United claimed the Boys U14 Division championship at the Super Y League North American Finals on Tuesday morning with a 3-0 win against the New Jersey Stallions at IMG Academy.
After rallying to take a victory against the Chicago Inferno in a penalty shootout in the semifinals the previous day, the win was a sweet one for Smith and his teammates.
“I’m very happy,” said Smith. “Every single game was a fight, we’re out here putting in everything we’ve got, and you can never give up on your chances, you’ve always go to keep going.”
Miramar opened the game well, and had the first two serious scoring chances. Daniel Popa created the first as he broke on the counter-attack into the left side of the penalty area, cut back onto his right foot past his marker and sent a high shot that was tipped over the crossbar by Stallions goalkeeper William Schurze.
United then had a good spell of pressure in the New Jersey end that culminated with a chance for Nigel Muirhead, but his shot from the left side of the penalty area went wide of the near post.
The Stallions’ first good chance came midway through the half as an attack down the right resulted in a low cross that found Barnabas Suto alone at the far post. The winger controlled, but was unable to find a way past Miramar goalkeeper Noah Black, who closed down quickly to make a big save.
Miramar continued to carry the majority of the play, however, and went close to opening the scoring when an attack came to Christian Bourne centrally. His volleyed effort was bobbled by Schurze, but the goalkeeper recovered in time to control possession before Kamoni Turner could pounce on the loose ball.
Turner gave Miramar the lead early in the second half, however, as he got possession at the top of the penalty area, beat his defender and sent a left-footed shot into the right corner of the net.
“It was critical,” said Smith. “Getting that first goal really led us on to scoring more.”
New Jersey’s Nick Zielonka went close to an equalizer with a free kick that zipped just over the left corner of the crossbar, but Miramar added to its lead from the penalty spot following a foul in the area. Smith stepped up and converted low to the left corner, as he had twice in United’s semifinal win.
The Stallions pressed forward to try and find a way back into the game, and Giovanni Gianella had a low shot through traffic that was parried away well by Black to maintain Miramar’s two-goal lead, but with the final kick of the game Smith drove home a low finish to wrap up the championship for United.
“It’s amazing knowing that we all played as well as we could, and we all put in everything that we could,” said Smith.