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ECNL Apr 18, 2024

Players to Watch: ECNL Boys 2024 Texas National Event

The second ECNL Boys National Event of 2024 is coming up with ECNL Texas taking place from April 19-21 in Round Rock, Texas.

ECNL Texas will feature 184 teams from across the league’s U16-U18/U19  age groups. To view the schedule for ECNL Texas, 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.

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


Preston Gaal | Forward
Dallas Texans Academy 08 (TX)

Leads an attacking unit that has scored 21 goals in Texas Conference play this season, leading the Texans to an 8-3-1 record on 25 points. Whether on or off of the ball, Gaal is highly difficult for defenders to break down and can use his speed to create goal-scoring chances in any situation. For Preston High School this winter, he earned Texas All-State Honorable Mention and All-District Second Team honors.


Cross Horton

Defender Midfielder

A member of the Texans 2022 ECNL National Championship team, Horton has Dallas once again near the top of the Texas Conference (8-3-1, 25 points). Whether working in close or open spaces, Horton can make the difficult tackles needed to slow down attacks and give his teammates time to reorganize. In addition to winning the ECNL National Championship, Horton also helped the Texans win the Dana Cup out of Denmark and the Norway Cup. He also in the past been invited to a USYNT ID Center event.

Jake Basinet | Forward
San Diego Surf 07 (CA)

Earned U16 ECNL Player of the Year honors last season for Surf, leading the team to a ECNL National Championship. His dynamic first touch and clinical finishing has continued to provide Surf with a spark in one of the top conferences in the country, leading an attacking unit to 46 goals and an undefeated record (9-0-5, 32 points).


Lukas Ramans | Midfielder
MVLA 08 (CA)

Serves as the creative force for a dynamic MVLA attack that has dominated the Northern California Conference, scoring 67 goals while allowing just eight. At 5’11’ Ramans is a threat both on the ground and in the air, using his superior field awareness and tactical skills to place passes to teammates at multiple points on the pitch. He is also an asset on the defense, knocking down high crosses and slowing down the opposition through the center of the pitch. He was last year’s U15 Northern California Conference Player of the Year and a member of the ECNL’s All-America team.


Jovan Radovic | Midfielder
Placer United 08 (CA)

Spent the winter training with the Los Angeles Galaxy Academy which seems to have only strengthened his already impressive passing and technical skills. With Radovic controlling possession through the midfield, Placer have earned points in each of their last fourteen Northern California Conference matches, pulling them into second place (13-1-5, 44 points).


Braxton Nemes | Midfielder
San Francisco Elite Academy 08 (CA)

Maintains possession and helps build attacking plays through the midfield for San Francisco, providing his outside wingers with crisp diagonal passes. A set piece specialist, Nemes can also deliver excellent service off of corners and free kicks for his teammates to capitalize on. He is coming off of a standout high school season for Archbishop Riordan High School in which he earned WCAL Second Team honors.


Moises Farias-Diaz | Forward
Mustang SC 08 (CA)

A 2023 USYNT Talent ID Center invitee, Farias has propelled the high-scoring attack to 30 goals this season in the Northern California Conference. Against stifling opposition, Farias can take any space given to him in the attacking third and make immediate gains using his precision dribbling to drive directly at defenses. Working alongside Aidan DePaco and Brody Anand, Mustang have multiple attacking options that they can throw at opponents.


Nathan Peeler | Goalkeeper
Association FC 08 (CA)

Possessing excellent glove and footwork, Peeler has risen to the top of the 2008 goalkeepers. In a Northern California Conference where teams score at will, Peeler has provided an alternative stifling attackers and snuffing out chances. Alongside fellow goalkeeper Giovanni Lopez Montoya, Peeler has led an Association defense that has earned eight shutouts across all ECNL competitions, while allowing just thirteen goals in conference play (third lowest among all teams). Peeler has previously gone on trial with Nashville SC’s MLS NEXT team and is currently a member of both the Cal North ODP and the NorCal PDP programs.


Caden Schumacher | Midfielder
BVB IA 08 (TX)

Operating out of the midfield, Schumacher leads a BVB defense that has conceded just 14 goals in Texas Conference play this season. His work in making defensive plays and controlling the midfield was integral in BVB placing second at this year’s Dallas Cup and propelling the team to be one of the top defenses in the country. He also recently returned from Germany after having participated in the BVBIA School of Excellence National Team.


Jayden Puna | Defender
HTX 08 (TX)

As a center back Jayden leads his defense and makes critical defensive stops. He also contributes on offense with his great accurate long passes to provide assists, and also very dangerous in taking shots form distance and headers from corner kicks. As a freshman he won the newcomer award for his school where he started on the varsity team and contributed with goals, assists and his defense. This year as a Sophomore, he was named the captain of his team and lead the team to their first playoff bi-District championship and was named District MVP. His versatility and ability to play multiple positions such as Center back, Winger, Attacking Mid, and Striker has contributed to the success of his Varsity team, and his club team


Hunter Sauser


A jack-of-all-trades up top, Sauser can play multiple positions up top while thriving in each area. He was also instrumental in Dallas’ deep run at the Dallas Cup, leading an attacking line that scored seven goals in five matches. In addition to his work with the Texans U17 and U18/U19 teams, he is also a member of the Denton Diablos under-23 team.

Christian Samaripa | Midfielder
DKSC 07 (TX)

A member of last year’s ECNL U16 All-American team, Samaripa has once again led DKSC to a strong start in Texas Conference play (8-1-2, 26 points). Playing as either an attacking midfielder or at the center spot, he can make multiple defenders miss using his speed and light touches to open up space. He is also a two-way player and can contribute to the defensive end as well as the attacking side.


Tobias Crear | Forward
Dallas Texans Academy 07 (TX)

Operating as the Texans number seven, Crear is a playmaker down the right flank for Dallas utilizing his speed and pace to lead their attack. Last year’s U16 Texas Conference Player of the Year has continued to terrorize defenses this season, leading the Texans to 26 goals in conference play this season. While his goal-scoring prowess makes him a deadly player up top, his ability to read what defenses are thinking and provide an immediate counter is what sets him apart. He can beat teams multiple ways and is equally effective with his passing as he is with his shots.

Noah Wanzer | Defender
FC Dallas Red 07 (TX)

Captained Dallas to back-to-back victories over B-En Elite (2-0) and Beach FC of Virginia (4-1) at the February Phoenix event. Wanzer leads a tight backline that works together to prevent any dangerous balls from entering their eighteen yard box. Thanks to their stout defensive work, Dallas have allowed only six goals in Texas Conference play this season, tied for second lowest among all teams.


Patryk Jankowski | Forward
HTX Soccer 07 (TX)

Scored a critical goal for the East at the 2023 ECNL National Selection Game in Arizona, once again showing that when the spotlight is on him he can thrive. Jankowski uses his strength and speed to create space between himself and the defense, which in turn gives HTX plenty of quality goal-scoring opportunities (40 goals scored this season, most in the Texas Conference). The junior forward from Woodlands High School earned All-District honors this past winter and will look to continue his scoring form with HTX in their home state.


Corbyn Wendorf | Winger
Solar SC Academy 08 (TX)

Whether playing on the right or left sides of the pitch, Wendorf is a difference-maker on both sides of the pitch for Solar. Defensively, he can stem counter-attacks by closely marking opponent’s on the outside giving them little space to break through. On the attacking end, he can deliver highly accurate crosses and diagonal passes for his forwards to pounce on. At the recent Dallas Cup, Solar won all three of their matches in Bracket E thanks in part to their balanced gameplan.


Lukas McCaulou | Forward
Libertyville FC 1974 RL 07 (IL)

Using his speed and dynamic left foot, McCaulou can break through defenses and create strong goal-scoring opportunities for Libertyville. His distribution skills are always on point and give teammates space to create but also are close enough that they can avoid being intercepted. His service in the final third has been a major reason for the team scoring eight goals in their first three games.


Bentley McCool | Defender
San Antonio City 07 (TX)

Calm and consistent under pressure, McCool has thrived as one of the leaders of San Antonio’s backline over the past few seasons. Playing as a center back, the 2024 defender can box out attackers in open space giving himself ample space and time to either clear the dangerous ball or make a clean, professional tackle. Thanks to his work in the defensive third, San Antonio have conceded just six goals in Texas Conference play while earning a 6-1-1 record on 13 points.