After a big tournament weekend to return to play, the first "regular" weekend of Riverhounds Development Academy (RDA) competition last weekend placed teams in league action in both ECNL and Great Lakes Alliance matches.
The 2007 Boys provided one of the weekend's highlights by launching their ECNL campaign successfully with a 3-1 win over the Western NY Flash at Highmark Stadium on Sunday, as the team rallied after conceding first to a Flash counter. Aidan Thomas headed home the tying goal, and J.J. Vozar added two more off corner kick plays, while the team's back four of Garrett Chandler, Daniel Moya-Gibbons, Justin Walsh and Brayden Davin solidified in front of keeper Logan Joseph.
The 07 Regional League Girls side also put a point on the board Saturday on the strength of their defense. They went on the road to face the Flash and played a 0-0 draw -- the fourth straight shutout for the team -- thanks to the goalkeeping of Braidyn Recker and the defensive corps of Alessia Paladino, Ava Simpson, Aliah Evans and Lilly Hillegas.
The 2010 Girls also came away with two Pre-ECNL wins out of three on a Midwestern road swing. The side split 2-0 decisions Saturday against the Michigan Hawks, with Leesia Phetsomphou and Lucy Szakelyhidi scoring in the win, and an excellent Penny Walker strike paired with an own goal Sunday to give the Hounds a 2-0 win over Pacesetter SC (Ohio).
More than two dozen GLA crossover matches on the road in Ohio filled out the weekend's schedule and yielded further good results.
The high-scoring 09 Boys added two more wins over Team Challenger FC by scores of 5-3 and 6-3. Warren Agostoni scored two in each match, while Cole Celedonia netted three and four other players addded goals on the weekend.
The RDA East also produced a pair of double winners in the 07 East Girls and the 08 East Boys.
Playing the first match of the weekend Friday night, the 08 East Boys topped Canton United, 3-2, after rallying from down two goals with strikes in the final 25 minutes by Matt Kolencik, Ian Natale and Rocco Hagan. Natale's Friday goal was just an appetizer, as he posted a whopping six goals Sunday in a 10-2 win over Barca Academy Columbus.
For the 07 East Girls, it was a defensively sound weekend in a 1-0 win over Worthington United and a 2-0 victory over Club Ohio. Cali Dyche scored the lone goal in Saturday's opener, and Carmella Simco netted the two Sunday goals.
For a full rundown of the weekend's matches, be sure to keep checking the Live Results page.
Sunday, Sept. 13
In Pre-ECNL play in Sylvania, Ohio:
• The 10 Girls had their best outing yet as a unit, stringing together combinations of passes and communicating well in a 2-0 win over Pacesetter SC (Ohio). Penny Walker scored what her coaches called the "goal of the week" in the Hounds victory, while the other came via own goal.
• The 09 Girls played better than the scoreline indicated, but the team wasn't able to finish and fell to Pacesetter SC, 5-0.
In Boys ECNL matches at Highmark Stadium:
• The 07 Boys fell behind early on a second-chance, counter attack goal, but that would be the only time the Western NY Flash beat goalkeeper Logan Joseph, and the Hounds rallied for a 3-1 win. The team was efficient on corner kicks, as Aidan Thomas headed home the tying goal, and JJ Vozar scored the next two from set pieces. Credit goes to the back four of Garrett Chandler, Daniel Moya-Gibbons, Justin Walsh and Brayden Davin for tightening up after the early goal.
• The 08 Boys had a difficult welcome to ECNL action and will need to elevate their level of play after a 4-0 loss to the WNY Flash.
In GLA matches in Ohio:
• The 07 East Girls found their touch moving the ball as the game progressed, and that led to a pair of Carmella Simco goals in a 2-0 win over Club Ohio.
• One of the matches of the day was contested by the 10 East Boys, who pulled out a back-and-forth 4-3 win over Pacesetter SC. Caleb Hart, Gaven Rummel and Nolan Ptaskiewicz each scored for the Hounds, who also scored on an own goal by the home team.
• The 09 East Boys weren't as fortunate against Pacesetter. After an even first half, the home club scored three unanswered goals to send the RDA to a 5-2 defeat. Matthew Kolencik and Zander Gregg scored the Hounds' goals.
• Ian Natale pulled off the rare double hat trick, and his six-goal outburst paced the 08 East Boys to a 10-2 win over Barca Academy Columbus (Ohio).
• It wasn't the 07 East Boys' day, and they came up on the wrong end of a 3-0 score against Barca Academy.
• The 08 East Girls also came up on the short end against Barca Academy, 2-1.
• Credit the 09 East Girls for not giving up and rallying to get a 3-3 draw after falling behind 1-0 and 3-1 to FC Evolution (Ohio).
• The 08 RDA II Boys spent most of the game in the opposition half in an emphatic 7-0 win over Ohio's Worthington United. Mark Martella scored the hat trick, while Ethan Szakelyhidi, Milo Kent, Canaan Kerestesi and Brylon Woods also scored.
• The 09 Boys kept pouring in the goals, with Warren Agostoni and Cole Celedonia getting two each in a 6-3 win over Team Challenger (Ohio). Maddox Chiu and Christian Ovalle also scored for the Hounds.
Saturday, Sept. 12
In Pre-ECNL matches in Livonia, Mich.:
• The 10 Girls got a split on the road against a pair of Michigan Hawks sides. After falling in the opener to a very big and skilled side, 2-0, the team won their second match by an identical score. Leesia Phetsomphou and Lucy Szakelyhidi netted the goals in the Hounds' victory.
In ECNL Regional League matches in Buffalo, N.Y.:
• The defensive excellence by the 07 Regional League Girls side continued with another clean sheet, the fourth in a row by goalkeeper Braidyn Recker, in a 0-0 draw with the Western NY Flash. Alessia Palladio, Ava Simpson, Aliah Evans and Lilly Hillegas have anchored the back line in their strong start to the season.
• The 08 Regional League Girls also had a strong game in possession and were able to create chances, but the Hounds were unable to finish while the Flash were, and the hosts took a 2-0 win.
In GLA matches in Ohio:
• The 07 RDA II Boys weren't at their best in the first half, but the side turned it on and broke a halftime tie with four goals in the second half of a 5-3 win over Ohio Premier. Nathan Katari scored twice, while the rest of the scoring came from Jack Scarsella, Tyler Sidhom and an own goal by the hosts.
• The defense still needs to be tightened up for the 09 Boys, but they had enough firepower in attack to get a 5-3 win over Team Challenger (Ohio). Warren Agostoni scored a pair, and Cole Celedonia, Grayson Stuart and Cam Sullenger also had goals for the Hounds.
• The 08 RDA II Boys played with confidence while controlling possession and territory against Club Ohio. The one area lacking was the delivery into the penalty area, and as a result, the Hounds had to settle for a scoreless draw rather than a win.
• The 10 Boys played an even match with Cuyahoga Valley (Ohio), and Caydon Payne found the net in a 1-1 draw.
• The 07 East Boys tallied a deserved 3-0 win over Pacesetter SC (Ohio). Jack Smith, Bryson Luther and Colton Payne accounted for the goals.
• The 09 East Girls allowed Club Ohio to dictate play and force a fair amount of long ball in the first half. The Hounds did take a one-goal lead to the break, but better second-half play adjusting to the opponent allowed the RDA to pull away for a 5-0 win made by a Riley Leasher hat trick and two goals by Lauren Paugh.
• Cali Dyche's strike was the difference for the 07 East Girls in a 1-0 win that was otherwise evenly matched with Worthington United (Ohio).
• Ella Van Norman scored, but the 08 East Girls were topped on the road by Ohio Premier, 4-1.
• Noah Jurcevich and Matthew Kolencik found the net, but the 09 East Boys were topped by Pro Soccer Club (Ohio), 5-3.
• The 08 East Boys were topped 6-1 by Ohio Premier, with Ian Natale netting the lone goal.
• A slow start doomed the 10 East Boys, but Maskim Miller found the net in a 3-1 loss to Columbus United (Ohio).
Friday, Sept. 11
• The 08 East Boys showed resilience after trailing by two goals, and the team came back in the final 25 minutes to snag a 3-2 win at Canton United (Ohio). Matt Kolencik, Ian Natale and Rocco Hagan scored to complete the RDA rally.