By Jimmy LaRoue
Two more new Development Academy clubs make their debuts this weekend, while 10 U-16 and 14 U-18 teams started their seasons with wins, including two of them with two wins each.
San Juan Soccer Club and Orlando City are the latest clubs to make their Development Academy debuts this weekend, a week after Portland and Montreal did so.
Real Salt Lake AZ of the Southwest Division hosts new Northwest Division side San Juan Soccer Club Saturday, while Orlando City hosts North Carolina Fusion Sunday in Jacksonville, Fla. in both U-16 and U-18 play. Those are among the 64 matches scheduled this weekend as the Mid-America and Southeast Divisions open play.
Matchups: The Richmond Strikers will look for their first wins of the season against crosstown rival Richmond Kickers this Saturday, while Virginia Rush will continue to be tested against strong D.C. United sides who picked up wins last weekend. We’ve already mentioned Orlando City’s opening academy matches against North Carolina Fusion. Fusion’s U-18s finished third at last season’s academy national championships.
Newcomers Montreal Impact host their first games against FC Bolts Celtic Sunday and the New York Red Bulls face Revolution Empire.
In a battle of the Carolinas, South Carolina United Battery hosts CASL Chelsea FC Academy Sunday in a Southeast Division matchup which opens the schedule for each team. Kendall SC, whose U-18s tuned up for the season by giving up just one goal against two, Division II teams, travels to North Meck SC and Charlotte Soccer Academy this weekend.
Matchups: Shattuck-Saint Mary’s Soccer Academy and FC Milwaukee open Mid-America Division play, as do Sporting Kansas City and Colorado Rush. Both Crew Soccer Academy and Crew Soccer Academy Wolves are in action, against Indiana Fire Academy and Internationals, respectively.
In the Frontier Division, Solar Chelsea SC host Houston Dynamo, and Andromeda take on Texas Rush.
U.S. Soccer’s peak performer of the week came out of the Southwest Division, with Bryce Marion scoring three first half goals to lead the Texans SC Houston U-16 team to a 4-1 victory against the Texas Rush on Sunday in its season opener.
Matchups: Chivas USA, after winning its first two games last weekend in U-18s, gets the next two weeks off, while Strikers FC, the other U-18 double-Southwest Division winner last weekend, has this weekend off.
We’ve already mentioned the Northwest Division’s San Juan Soccer Club making its debut at Real Salt Lake AZ. Other matches of note out west include San Diego Surf hosting DeAnza Force Saturday. Outside of that, there are no other games in the West Conference this weekend.
2012-13 complete Development Academy schedule
Note: The U.S. U-17 men’s national team split two games with academy teams, pulling out a 3-2 victory over St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri, while Crew Soccer Academy scored a 2-1 win against the U.S. U-17 MNT Monday.