It's been a few weeks...apologies for not getting to this but that just means this one will be more meaty! Before we start, I want to encourage everyone to head out to the Hilltop tonight as SMU takes on Memphis on Senior Night out at Westcott Field. The Ponies have multiple FCD Academy alumni on the roster and it will be a great chance to check out Brazilian Arthur Ivo, a likely 1st round FC Dallas draft pick. I'll be getting my first look at the squad this season, looking forward to it.
This is the last review before the conference tournaments start so be sure to check back next week as many of these teams should be making the NCAA tournament.
Bradlee Baladez(Forward) - University of South Carolina Sophomore South Carolina is enjoying one of their best seasons ever with a 6-1 conference record and Baladez is at the heart of the success. They scored their biggest win of the season on Tuesday night winning 1-0 at Central Florida with Bradlee tallying the game-winning assist in double overtime. Baladez leads the team in points with 7 goals and 4 assists in 16 games. The Gamecocks end the regular season tonight at home against Kentucky.
Damian Rosales(Midfielder) - SMU Sophomore - After a 5 match unbeaten run, the Ponies have struggled a little bit in recent weeks dropping results to Kentucky and UAB in shutout losses. Rosales is having a nice redshirt freshman year, however, with 2 goals and 2 assists while playing in all 16 games for SMU.
Jamie Ibarra(Goalkeeper) - SMU Sophomore Ibarra is having a really nice sophomore year for SMU with 16 goals allowed in 15 games. He's also got 3 shutouts.
Keep reading for more college player review and how the unbeaten U18 academy is doing
London Woodberry(Defense) - University of Maryland Junior The Terps have slipped up in recent weeks with tough ACC games going 0-1-2 at UNC, Clemson and Wake Forest. They start the ACC tournament against Boston College on Tuesday night. Woodberry has started 17 of 18 games in defense this season, getting a red card for a handball on the line in the game against UNC. He has one assist on the season and looks to be a definite candidate for a homegrown contract after next season.
Daniel Premenko(Defender - Creighton Sophomore The 15-2 Creighton Blue Jays are ranked #1 overall in the NCAA RPI rankings and have 4 straight shutouts. Premenko has not played this season.
Boyd "OC" Okwuono(Defender) - University of North Carolina Freshman The Tar Heels are 14-2-2 on the season and just won their third consecutive ACC regular season championship with a 2-0 win at Boston College. OC is enjoying arguably the best season among FCD Academy products having started all 18 games for a Tar Heel defense that has allowed 13 goals in 18 games and just twice allowed more than one goal in a game.
Jacob Gerondale(Defender) - IPFW Redshirt Freshman The Mastodons are 7-9-2 on the season after a tough 1-3-1 run in their last five games but Gerondale has broken into the starting XI recently with 9 starts and 16 appearances in 18 games this year.
Jack Coleman(Defender/Midfielder) - Indiana Freshman The Hoosiers are 4-0-2 in their last 6 games and really peaking at the right time as we head into conference tournaments. Unfortunately, Coleman has featured in just one game for Indiana this year. Kind of crazy to me as I rated him higher than Okwuono who has started every game for a national championship contender.
Skylar Hagan(Outside midfielder) - Old Dominon Freshman After winning 7 games in a row on a run that saw ODU crack most top 10 polls, the Monarchs have fallen to earth a bit losing their last two games at James Madison and Northeastern. They close out the regular season tonight at home against Drexel and are set for what should be a fun playoff run. Hagan has really had a nice freshman season at ODU after struggling to crack the lineup early, he has been a big part of things lately with 13 games played on the season tallying a goal and assist.
Byron Knowles(Defender) - Lubbock Christian Freshman 2 goals and an assist in 18 games for the Chaparrals. LCU finished 2nd in the SAC regular season and opens the conference tournament against Oklahoma Christian tonight.
There has been no more impressive team in the early stages of the Development Academy season than the FCD U18 Academy. Despite losing 3 starters on the back line, the U18's are 6-0-1 in 7 games against Texas Division opponents with 15 goals scored and 4 goals allowed. In the past few weeks, they've defeated Solar 4-0, Texans SC Houston 2-0 and drawn Andromeda 1-0. The stars of 2011-2012 so far have been UNC commit Daniel Garcia with 5 goals in 5 games and defenders Mark Ashby(Harvard commit) and Aaron Guillen(Brought in from El Paso sister club this year).
With the El Paso partnership, there's about 15 stories to be told about this team right now, but rest assured there are some really great things happening with Oscar Pareja, Jose Bazan and their kids. They travel to Houston for a huge Texas Derby against the Dynamo this weekend.
The U16's are enjoying a nice season at 3-3-1 sitting third in the Texas Division. They exploded this past weekend for a 7-0 win over Andromeda with 6 different goal scorers. The most interesting thing from that game, however, is the fact that Weston McKinnie made his first appearance for the U16s. McKinnie is a highly touted youngster I saw play for FCD in Dallas Cup this year. Everything seems normal until you look and see his birthday...8/28/1998...that's right a 13 year old played for the U16 academy last weekend. Crazy stuff.