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ECNL Jul 15, 2024

Players to Watch: ECNL Boys 2024 National Finals

The ECNL Boys will finish their 2023-2024 season with their National Finals, which will take place July 15-18 in Richmond, Virginia. (Event Homepage)

This year’s ECNL National Finals will feature 40 teams from across the league’s U13-U17 age groups. The U18/U19 Championship was decided at the National Playoffs in Seattle with Crossfire Premier winning top honors.

Ahead of the weekend’s action, here are some players to know from this year’s event. Players are listed according to their graduation year.

You can nominate also nominate a player who has stood out this season that will be attending the event through the following link.


Saul Santana | Midfielder-Defender
Rockford Raptors 09 (IL)

Netted the game-winning goal in Rockford’s opening day Group I victory over Mustang SC (2-1). Santana applies consistent pressure through the midfield, using his speed and pace to open up avenues for his teammates to exploit. In terms of his striking, he can use his left foot to hit shots at a variety of speeds towards goal giving goalkeepers major problems.


Will Walker | Goalkeeper
San Diego Surf 09 (CA)

Allowed just two goals in Surf’s undefeated run through Group E, including shutting out Florida Kraze 2-0 in the finale. Walker showed remarkable poise under pressure in the Round of 16 making multiple key saves down the stretch to hold off Florida Premier FC 3-2. In 2023, Walker participated in the USYNT Talent ID Center event in Carson as well as the US Club Soccer SoCal ID2 event.


Kaden Tabib | Midfielder/strong>
Richmond United 09 (VA)

Seamlessly transitions Richmond from the midfield into the attack using his precise footwork and crisp passing to unlock defenses. His confidence with the ball and desire to drive directly at defenders helps open up gaps for both himself and his teammates. He is currently playing in the US Youth Futsal Nationals an experience that will undoubtedly help him and Richmond prepare for defending their home city.


Valentino Quaranta | Midfielder/strong>
Pipeline SC 09 (MD)

Orchestrated a highly nuanced, balanced Pipeline that dominated possession and limit ed opponents passing lanes in their defensive third. Thanks to Quaranta and the midfield’s efforts Pipeline went undefeated in Group Play and in the Round of 16 (4-0-0, 12 points) and outscored their opponents 20-1. The defending National Champions are looking for more hardware down the I-95 corridor and with Quaranta in the middle they certainly having a strong chance of repeating.


Christian Tshiteya | Forward
Northern Virginia Alliance 08 (VA)

Buried a critical goal in NVA’s Round of 16 match against St. Louis Scott Gallagher, scoring alongside David Arroyo in their 2-0 victory. Tshiteya can weave through defenses with relative ease using sleek ball control to make defenders miss and give up space. His speed down the wings also helps create quick counter-strikes and allows them to go punch-for-punch against high-scoring opponents.


Nate Chandler | Center Back
Mustang SC 08 (CA)

A spark plug on both sides of the pitch for Mustang Chandler can provide the late bit of energy that Mustang needs in critical moments. Off of set pieces and throw-ins he has a knack for making late back post runs towards goal while avoiding detection. On the defensive end at the National Playoffs, he helped Mustang earn two clean sheets over Charlotte Independence Academy (2-0 win) and OK Energy FC (0-0 draw in regulation, victory in penalties). He scored twice in San Diego in regulation and added a penalty kick strike in the Energy victory.


Matteo Crisera | Center Back
Beach FC 08 (CA)

Captained Beach to an undefeated record in Group C (3-0-0, 9 points) while allowing just one goal in their three matches. In the Round of 16 Crisera continued his dominant defensive work limiting La Roca to just one goal in their 5-1 victory. Whether playing as a center or left Crisera gives it his all on every play applying consistent pressure on attackers while looking for errors that he can exploit.


Kaonohiokala (Cooper) Koerlin | Defender
Tennessee SC 08 (TN)

Despite facing consistent pressure all season, Korelin has thrived and pushed TSC into the Elite Eight. The two-time TSC captain helped their backline navigate through some tricky waters in Group F booking critical draws over Ohio Premier (1-1) and STA (3-3) to start their postseason. Koerlin’s clear communication skills and timely clearances helped TSC steady the ship on matchday three and earn the group-clinching 5-1 win over Placer United. In addition to his worked with TSC, he helped Brentwood High School earn a state title in 2023 and participated in the Tennessee ODP program from 2019-2022.


Justin Chen | Midfielder
Crossfire Premier 08 (WA)

Slotting in as XF’s attacking midfielder, Chen scored three goals to help book their spot in the Elite Eight. Off of the ball, Chen can make the small cuts necessary to create space between himself and defenders while also simultaneously making himself a target for his teammates. He is comfortable using either foot to finish and times his strikers so as to give himself the best chance at goal.


Crew Hartlage | Goalkeeper
Louisville City Academy 07 (KY)

Clamped down on opponent’s work inside of Louisville’s defensive third during the National Playoffs working alongside his backline to earn shutouts over Legends FC (4-0) and NCFC Youth (2-0). At 6’1″ Hartlage can take on physical attackers in the air and win challenging 50-50 balls. He is also highly accurate with his punts and throws allowing his teammates time and space to set up possession. In addition to his work between posts in the ECNL Hartlage also plays for the club’s USL Academy team and has earned All-State and All-Region honors in the past with Louisville Collegiate High School.


Jonah Ramsey | Goalkeeper
Dallas Texans Academy 07 (TX)

Held two high-scoring attacks in the Minnesota Thunder (1-0 loss) and FC Stars (4-1 win) to just one goal a piece while shutting out Pittsburgh Riverhounds 4-0 to finish first in Group E. In the Round of 16 he had an equally impressive effort, making multiple key saves in the Texans 6-1 win over Pateadores. Ramsey is more than willing to mix it up with attackers and knows how to use the full field to slow down forwards that are pressing. He was called up to participate in the ECNL National Selection Game in Dallas in April.


Miles Johnson | Midfielder-Forward
LAFC So Cal 07 (CA)

Led the attacking charge for LAFC So Cal at the National Playoffs, scoring four of their seven goals including a brace against San Antonio City SC (2-1). Johnson makes sharp sizzling runs out of the midfield towards goal and can make the small touches in tight space that are necessary to elude slide tackles.


Kenzi Touadi | Defender
Florida Premier FC 07 (FL)

Alternating between the left-back and center-back positions Touadi helps build possession out of the back for Florida. Using his strong left foot Touadi can pick out teammates in all areas of the pitch. He also scored both of their second half goals in the Round of 16 against Eclipse Select (2-1) to book Premier’s spot in the Quarterfinals.

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