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ECNL Jun 25, 2024

Players to Watch: ECNL Boys 2024 National Playoffs

The ECNL Boys will kick off their second season next week with the ECNL National Playoffs commencing in San Diego. (EVENT PREVIEW)

This year’s ECNL National Playoffs will feature 332 teams from across the league’s U13-U18/U19Β  age groups. To view the schedule for ECNL National Playoffs, click here.

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.

 

2027

Jaden Lee | Midfielder
World Class FC 09 (NY)

Captained World Class to their third consecutive Northeast Conference Champions while booking an undefeated record (13-0-1, 40 points). Their defense played a major role in their success this season limiting opponents to 14 goals in conference play this season. Lee’s timely tackles and ability to build possession out of the back helped alleviate the pressure on the line and gave them time to reorganize. He also scored twice and added two assists.

2026

Chase Stewart

Forward
NV

Scores goals for fun for HeatΒ  (he has had three consecutive years of scoring over 35 goals) and helped lead the team to second place in the Southwest (13-5-4, 43 points). The Nevada Offensive Player of the Year, Stewart devastates defenses in both closed and open space and can whip shots on target with both speed and pace.

Colin Harkleroad

Goalkeeper
NJ

Booked 16 clean sheets in all competitions for Match Fit this season, including six in Northeast Conference play. Harkleroad is an effective communicator who orchestrates a strong backline and is an excellent shot-stopper at both short and long range. He is also highly effective at distributing the ball out of the back and opening up play.

Cross Horton

Defender Midfielder
TX

A former USYNT ID Camp invitee, Horton has had another standout season for the Texans. His leadership and ability to build out of the back help set the tone for the Texans who are looking to earn their second National Championship. Also, keep an eye out for him on set pieces as he can bomb the box and create goal-scoring opportunities.

Kyle Harvey

Defender
NJ

An exceptional defender that can anticipate what attackers are thinking two-three steps ahead of time and make immediate adjustments. He can also assist on the attack and helps MFA build out of the back when needed.

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Daniel Lindenberger | Midfielder-Defender
Cleveland Force 07 (OH)

Under pressure, Lindenberger thrives making key tackles and interceptions for the Force (10-3-1, 31 points) in both the midfield and defense. He can anticipate what opponents two-three steps ahead and provide an immediate curtailing their hopes on the attack. He is also highly accurate with his crosses and passes, a testament to his work as a punter and kicker for Fairview High School. In addition to his work for the Force and for Fairview on the gridiron, he also received Erie Times-News Region Three All-Stars First Team honors this past season for soccer.

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Reid Campbell | Midfielder
Richmond United 07 (VA)

Shifts between the midfield and the forward position while always providing an attacking spark for Richmond. Campbell’s passing and ball control are always smooth and consistent, providing his teammates with excellent service in critical moments. Thanks to his efforts at both positions, Richmond rocketed to the top of the Mid-Atlantic 07 standings earning a 11-3-1 record on 34 points.

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Ryder Sherman | Midfielder
Dallas Texans Academy 08 (TX)

Captain the Texans to a Champions League spot and second place in the always difficult Texas Conference (10-4-3, 33 points). In the defensive midfield, Sherman excels at reading attackers intentions and plugging gaps before they become problem areas. He is also highly effective at hitting teammates with darting diagonal passes out of the back, forcing opponents to open up play in their defensive half. The Texans know what it takes to play under pressure (they won the U14 National Championship in 2022) and with Sherman at the helm will look for more silverware this season.

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Finley Williams | Defender-Midfielder
Rockford Raptors 07 (IL)

Provided quality defensive work all season for Rockford at the center back position, working together with their backline to limit opponents to just 17 goals in Mid-America Conference play. Williams can also move up in the midfield and uses his crisp ball control and dribbling skills at both possessions to push Rockford out of the back. With Huntley High School this season he showed that he thrives under pressure, helping the team capture the Region 3A title.

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Ryan Hendon | Midfielder-Forward
Tennessee SC 07 (TN)

A constant threat on the attack for TSC, Hendon can do damage with even the smallest of spaces for TSC. Comfortable driving with either foot he is more than willing to take on multiple defenders and can make the small cuts necessary to elude his opponents in traffic. Hendon has also played for TSC’s USL2 team and earned All-Region Honors with Station Camp High School.

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Liam Schumacher | Midfielder
Seattle United 07 (WA)

Held his own in a recent friendly against the Seattle Sounders, using his quick passing and exceptional field awareness to retain possession for extended periods of time. He is coming off of a strong high school season with Sehome in which he helped them go 19-2-1 while finishing as a Finalist at State. That experience will undoubtedly help Schumacher and Seattle ready themselves for the Champions League playoffs.

2025

Caedon Reynolds | Midfielder-Forward
SC Surf 07 (SC)

Enters this year’s playoffs in fine form, having just scored two goals and tallied two assists in a friendly against Charleston United. On the air and on the ground Reynolds provides a consistent attacking threat for a Surf team that scored 32 goals in Southeast Conference play (9-4-4, 31 points).

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Asher Huffman | Defender
Kansas City Atheltics 07 (KS)

Blasted left-footed clearances in difficult situations for Athletics all season while providing tight consistent coverage down the flank. Kansas City featured one of the toughest defenses in the Heartland Conference this season, allowing only 14 goals to help them finish first in the South Division (12-1-1, 37 points). Huffman’s work on the outside played a major role in their success, providing consistent defensive work in the air and on the ground. At Park Hill South high school, he is a standout athlete in both soccer (2023 Class 4 District Champions and Runners-up in State) and football.

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Kofi Asunbonteng | Goalkeeper
FC Stars 07 (KS)

Possesses excellent footwork and is a dynamic shot-stopper for a Stars team that finished atop a difficult Northeast Conference North Division (11-1-2, 35 points). Thanks to his quick decision-making and ability to make necessary adjustments in-game the Stars earned four shutouts across all ECNL competitions.

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Casey Price | Midfielder
Pipeline SC 07 (MD)

A Maryland verbal commit, Price has been the linchpin for the Pipeline 07 midfield for years, using his speed and quickness to control the pace of the game. His efforts have once again paid off for Pipeline, leading the team to the top spot in the Northeast Conference-South Division (11-1-2, 35 points). In addition to his club success, he is a three-year varsity starter at Archbishop Curley and was the team’s captain this past season. He has also racked up All-State, All-Metro, and All-MIAA awards during his high school career.

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Hudson Benites | Midfielder
Minnesota Thunder Academy 07 (MN)

The captain of the Minnetoka varsity team had a strong 2023, racking up ECNL All-Conference First Team, Midwest Region, and Minnesota State Soccer Tournament All-Tournament Team honors. For the Thunder he led the team to a 10-4-0 record on 30 points while helping the team score 45 goals, second most in the Midwest. He also plays for Minneapolis City’s UPSL team.

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