After signing as the fifth Homegrown player in Crew history, University of Akron standout Chad Barson joined TheCrew.com's Cody Sharrett for a short Q&A.
Cody Sharrett: Congratulations on signing with the Crew. How do you plan on contributing to the Black & Gold as a rookie?
Chad Barson: I think I bring a good work ethic. I have a good mentality in the way I approach things. I'm willing to contribute, and I'm a team guy. I put the team first. I'll put the team's needs above my own and whatever they need, that's what I'm willing to do.
CS: You've been captain for the past two seasons at Akron and as a centerback, you have to be a leader on the field. How do you approach being a leader as a rookie?
CB: You have to be yourself. You can't be shy. As a rookie, you're stepping into uncharted territory and just because you're the young guy or the new guy, it doesn't matter how long you've been around. Obviously guys that have been around have more say, but you still need to be able to lead, to talk and to organize guys because the position I play, you see the whole game from where you play.
CS: Your coach at Akron, Caleb Porter, has moved on to the Portland TImbers in MLS. How did he develop your game over the past four years at Akron.
CB: Basically, I like to say everything about my game is a result of Coach Porter. The way we trained at Akron, the mentality he teaches you how to approach life, how to approach school, how to approach soccer: it's really all from him. I see a lot of him in myself. When I talk, when I play, just everything really.
CS: You were born and raised in Columbus. Do you remember your first Crew game? Which players did you look up to?
CB: I don't remember my first Crew game. But watching guys like [Brian] McBride, [Brian] Maisonneuve and Jeff Cunningham, I remember watching those guys all the time when I was younger.
CS: Over the past few summers, you've spent time training with the First Team. Who is the toughest guy you've had to defend?
CB: Honestly size-wise, Andy Iro and Chad Marshall because they're some pretty big guys. I'd also throw Steve Lenhart in there because he's such a scrappy guy and he likes to be physical, but he's also a great guy.
To keep with the Crew headline of the day, this week's Throwback Thursday is dedicated to Homegrown midfielder Wil Trapp's days at nearby Gahanna Lincoln High School. While also spending time with the Crew Soccer Academy, Trapp racked up numerous accolades during his time at Lincoln.
Trapp helped the Golden Lions to a 41-1-2 record during his time playing for his school, leading Lincoln to the 2009 OHSAA Division I state title. Individually, Trapp was a two-time high school All-American, 2009 Gatorade Player of the Year in Ohio and the 2010 NSCAA National High School Player of the Year.
Yes, the 2012 NCAA champion Indiana Hoosiers were coached by two Columbus Crew legends in Todd Yeagley and Brian Maisonneuve. But the Crew connections on the Hoosier roster don't stop at Yeagley and Maisonneuve.
The team's leading scorer Eriq Zavaleta, playmaker A.J. Corrado started on the 2011 USL Super-20-winning Crew Juniors squad under Brian Bliss. In the Super-20 title match, Zavaleta scored on an assist from Corrado to help the Black & Gold to victory.
"[Winning the National Championionship] is good for those guys, and it's obviously good for us," Bliss said Monday. "It shows that we've identified some good players and hopefully we played a role in their development when they were here with us for two-and-a-half or three months of the year. We put a pretty good squad together in a competitive environment and hopefully that played a part in their development."
In addition to the two Hoosiers that helped Crew Juniors to glory in 2011, Senior captains Luis Soffner and Caleb Konstanski spent a week training with the Crew First Team last summer.
Congratulations to Todd Yeagley, Brian Maisonneuve and the Hoosiers on winning their eighth NCAA championship in school history.
Photo courtesy of IU Athletics.
The Crew Soccer Academy closed out the fall portion of its season at the U.S. Soccer Developmental Academy Winter Showcase in Sarasota, Florida over the weekend. The U-16 squad went 1-2-0, beating the New England Revolution and falling to Solar Chelsea FC and Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Silankonet Bayo led the team in scoring with two goals.
The U-18s also finished 1-2-0 at the Showcase. The Black & Gold was victorious over Solar Chelsea FC, but lost to the New England Revolution and Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Andrew McKelvey found the net twice to lead the team in scoring. The USSDA season will resume in March 2013.
Nate Kohl and William Bayemi were both picked to participate in the select game, a match where U.S Soccer scouts select players from across the country to participate. In the game, Kohl assisted on Bayemi's goal.
Also in a showcase, the U-16, U-17 and U-18 Crew Juniors Gold girls squads traveled to Raleigh, North Carolina for the CASL Women's Showcase Soccer Series. Coach Glen Tourville sent along this recap of the weekend:
"Each team played three games and each performance allowed for better play and improved team continuity from the previous game. The main goal of participating in the CASL Showcase is to allow our Crew players to showcase their talents in front of the college coaches in attendance. There were coaches present from all NCAA Divisions I, II, III and also coaches representing NAIA Schools. Our players competed in front of twelve to forty different college coaches at any one time depending on field location. All and all it was a very beneficial opportunity for our three teams."
On the youth international stage, Ben Swanson and CSA Wolves striker Ahinga Selemani helped the U.S. U-17 Men's National Team to a 1-1-1 record in the Nike International Friendlies series over the weekend. The Stars and Stripes started the tournament with a 4-4 draw against Brazil before beating Turkey 4-1 and losing to Portugal 4-3 to close out the weekend. Swanson featured in all three matches, while Selemani scored twice in the tourney.
In the Men's NCAA Division III National Championship, Luke Helmuth, Jack Thompson and Logan Thompson helped Messiah when its ninth title in school history over Ryan Sabol and Austin Windsor's Ohio Northern side. Jack Thompson recorded two assists in the 5-1 victory.
On the women's side, Mackenzie Clapper helped Messiah claim a 1-0 victory over Emory in the DIII National Championship game.
The NCAA Division I Tournament held its Elite Eight round over the weekend. Here are how the remaining Crew Youth alumni performed:
No. 10 LOUISVILLE -- Alex Obbey: 3-1 L vs. Maryland
No. 3 GEORGETOWN -- David Witkoff (DNP): 3-1 W vs. San Diego, will face Maryland Friday in NCAA College Cup
The United States U-17 Men's National Team kicked off the 2012 Nike International Friendlies Wednesday night in Lakewood Ranch, Florida with an eight goal draw against South American power Brazil. Crew Soccer Academy Wolves product Ahinga Selemani seemingly scored the winning tally in the 81st minute, just 11 minutes after coming on as a second half substitute. However, Brazil got the equalizer three minutes later when Murilo headed Indio's free kick past U.S. goalkeeper Paul Christensen to cement the 4-4 result. CSA alum and Grove City native Ben Swanson went the full 90 minutes in Richie Williams' midfield.
The U.S. U-17s resume play in the series against Turkey on Friday.
The Crew Soccer Academy U-16 and U-18 squads were idle once again this week ahead of the U.S. Soccer Developmental Academy Winter Showcase in Sarasota, Florida next weekend. Similarly, the U-16, U-17 and U-18 Crew Juniors Gold girls squads will head to Raleigh, North Carolina for the CASL Women's Showcase Soccer Series.
Ben Swanson, CSA Wolves product Ahinga Selemani and the U.S. U-17 Men's National Team have a busy week ahead. The Stars and Stripes host Brazil on Wednesday, Turkey on Friday and Portugal on Sunday for the 2012 edition of the Nike International Friendlies in Lakewood Ranch, Florida.
On the college stage, CSA product Eric Erb excelled on the field and in the classroom during his senior season at Case Western Reserve University. The Worthington native registered four goals and two assists to go with his 3.96 grade point average as a nutritional biochemistry and chemistry double-major to earn Capital One Academic All- District VII First Team and Second-Team All-UAA honors this season. On Tuesday, Erb added to his accolades by earning a spot on the Capital One Academic All-American team.
Erb was an instrumental player on the U-19 and U-20 teams that won the national championships in 2010 for Crew Juniors. He played on the U-17 team that won the Ohio South State Cup. Coached by Billy Thompson for a number of years, Thompson said this of Erb: "Eric always had a great work rate and a fantastic attitude. He gave 100% every time he stepped in the field – committed to getting better every day.”
The NCAA Division I Tournament held its Sweet Sixteen round on Sunday while the Division III tourney was idle in preparation for next weekend's Final Four. Here are how the remaining Crew Youth alumni performed in the Sweet Sixteen:
No. 5 AKRON -- Chad Barson, Wil Trapp (Assist), Eric Stevenson, Tommy Schmitt, Andrew Souders, Alex Ranalli (DNP), Andrian MacAdams (DNP): 1-1 (5-4) L vs. Creighton in NCAA Sweet Sixteen
No. 10 LOUISVILLE -- Alex Obbey (Assist): 2-1 W vs. Northwestern in NCAA Sweet Sixteen
No. 1 NOTRE DAME -- Connor Klekota (DNP): 2-1 L vs. Indiana in NCAA Sweet Sixteen
No. 3 GEORGETOWN -- David Witkoff (DNP): 1-0 (4-2) W vs.Syracuse in NCAA Sweet Sixteen
MESSIAH (DIII) -- Luke Helmuth, Jack Thompson and Logan Thompson: November 30 vs. Loras in Final Four
OHIO NORTHERN (DIII) -- Ryan Sabol and Austin Windsor: November 30 vs. Williams in Final Four
MESSIAH WOMEN (DIII) -- Mackenzie Clapper: November 30 vs. Misericordia in Final Four
*CSA Manager Karen Crognale contributed to this article
The Crew Soccer Academy U-16 and U-18 squads were idle this week. After 12 matches, the U-16s sit in fifth place in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Central Conference Mid-America Division with 18 points. The CSA Wolves lead the division on 31 points. In the U-18 age group, CSA is in eighth place on the table with 16 points and the CSA Wolves are in sixth place with 20 points.
The Pre-Academy 16s & 18s and the Gold 16s, 17s, 18s Boys teams started their seasons at the CASL College Showcase in Raleigh, North Carolina this past weekend. This is one of the top events and College Showcases in the country with over 300 college coaches attending. The event was a great start to the season and a success overall for the teams providing good competition, college recruiting exposure and professional expectations.
Ben Swanson, CSA Wolves product Ahinga Selemani, Carter Richardson and the U.S. U-17 Men's National Team will host Brazil, Turkey, and Portugal November 28 - December 4 in Florida. The friendlies take place during U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase, which CSA will be attending.
Selemani, a striker, committed to play his college career at Michigan State on Wednesday night.
In the college ranks, the NCAA Tournament began on Thursday and resumed through the weekend. Here is how all the CSA alumni and their teams fared:
(Seeded teams receive First Round bye)
No. 5 AKRON -- Chad Barson, Wil Trapp, Eric Stevenson, Tommy Schmitt, Andrew Souders, Alex Ranalli (DNP), Andrian MacAdams (DNP):
2-1 W vs. Michigan in NCAA Second Round, Goalscorers: Stevenson, Schmitt
SOUTH FLORIDA -- Eric Osswald: 0-0 (3-2 PK) W DNP vs. FGCU in First Round
1-0 L DNP vs. Tulsa in Second Round
No. 10 LOUISVILLE -- Alex Obbey: 5-0 W vs. Winthrop in Second Round
No. 15 WAKE FOREST -- Andy Lubahn: 2-1 L DNP vs. Coastal Carolina in Second Round
No. 1 NOTRE DAME -- Connor Klekota: 3-0 W DNP vs. Michigan State in Second Round
No. 3 GEORGETOWN -- David Witkoff: 1-0 W DNP vs. Charlotte in Second Round
XAVIER -- Matt Walker, Will Walker, Rhodes Moore, Nick Hagglund: 1-0 W vs. Kentucky in First Round, Goalscorer: Spencer (W. Walker)
4-1 L vs. No. 16 Indiana, Goalscorer: M. Walker (Spencer)
BOSTON COLLEGE -- Justin Luthy: 1-0 L vs. Northeastern, 6 saves in First Round
No. 6 UCLA -- Matt Wiet 5-2 L DNP vs. San Diego in Second Round
MESSIAH (DIII) -- Luke Helmuth, Jack Thompson and Logan Thompson: 2-2 (4-2 PK) W vs. York in Sweet Sixteen
3-0 W vs. Scranton in Elite Eight
OHIO NORTHERN (DIII) -- Ryan Sabol and Austin Windsor: 4-1 W vs. Susquehanna in Sweet Sixteen
2-1 W vs. Montclair St. in Elite Eight
MESSIAH WOMEN (DIII) -- Mackenzie Clapper: 5-0 W vs. MIT in Sweet Sixteen
3-0 W vs. Johns Hopkins in Elite Eight
The Crew Soccer Academy made the 16-hour trek to Minnesota over the weekend to face the Minnesota Thunder and Shattuck St. Mary's. Both the U-16 and U-18 squads prevailed over the Thunder. The U-18s set the tone on Saturday with a 3-1 win following goals from Nicolas Russo, Daniel Allen and Andrew McKelvey. The U-16 side followed suit, beating the Thunder 3-2 behind goals from Silankonet Bayo, George Braima and William Bayemi.
On Sunday, the Academy wasn't as fortunate as both teams fell to Shattuck St. Mary's. A brace from Noah Hutchins and another goal from Georges Daoud weren't enough as the U-16 squad lost a 4-3 heartbreaker. The 18s were shutout in a 3-0 defeat.
U.S. Soccer announced its plans for the 10th anniversary of the Nike International Friendlies last week. Ben Swanson, Carter Richardson and the U.S. U-17 Men's National Team will host Brazil, Turkey, and Portugal November 28 - December 4 in Florida. The friendlies take place during U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase, which CSA will be attending.
The regular season in college soccer wrapped-up last week, followed by Monday's NCAA Tournament selection. Here is how a few Crew Youth alumni fared in their conference championships and where they will be playing in the tournament:
Akron Zips (17-1-2) This Week: 2-0 W vs. Bowling Green, 2-0 W vs. Northern Illinois -- WON MAC CHAMPIONSHIP
The top-ranked Zips set a new NCAA record by extending their conference unbeaten run to 47 matches while also securing Akron's ninth MAC Championship over the weekend. On Friday, CSA product Wil Trapp opened the scoring against in-state rival Bowling Green with a strike from distance. Less than two minutes later, fellow Crew Youth alum Thomas Schmitt tallied to put the Zips up 2-0 over the Falcons. In the MAC Championship game against Northern Illinois on Sunday, Eric Stevenson helped set-up Saad Abdul-Salaam's opening goal while Chad Barson and Andrew Souders anchored the back line to its 16th shutout of the season. The Zips recieved the fifth overall seed in Monday's NCAA tournament drawing and will face the winner of Niagara and Michigan on Sunday at 4:30 p.m.
Xavier Musketeers (13-2-5) This Week: 1-1 (3-2 PK) W vs. Dayton, 1-0 L vs. Saint Louis
Matt Walker supplied the lone goal in the Musketeers' 1-1 penalty shootout win against Dayton in their first match of the Atlantic-10 Tournament before Xavier was knocked out of the tourney by Saint Louis on Friday. Additionally, CSA product Nick Hagglund was named A-10 Defensive Player of the Year. Xavier kicks off NCAA Tournament play against Kentucky on Thursday and will play Indiana on Sunday if they advance.
Boston College Golden Eagles (8-5-5) This Week: 0-0 (3-1) L at Clemson
Holding Clemson scoreless for 120 minutes on Tuesday wasn't enough for senior goalkeeper Justin Luthy and the 24th-ranked Golden Eagles as Boston College was ousted from the ACC Tournament. Luthy and the Golden Eagles face crosstown rival Northeastern on Thursday and will play UConn if they win.
UCLA Bruins (13-2-3) This Week: 2-1 W vs. San Diego State WON PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHIP
Matt Wiet helped the Bruins claim their fourth PAC-12 title in five years with Friday's 2-1 victory against San Diego State. The PAC-12 Champions received the sixth-overall seed and will play the winner of San Diego vs. Cal State Northridge on Sunday.
Other Crew Youth alumni playing in the tournament include:
Eric Osswald -- South Florida (vs. Florida Gulf Coast - Thursday, 7:00 p.m.)
Alex Obbey -- Louisville (vs. SMU/Winthrop - Sunday, 7:00 p.m.)
Andy Lubahn -- Wake Forest (vs. Elon/Coastal Carolina - Sunday, 5:00 p.m.)
Connor Klekota -- Notre Dame (vs. Cleveland St./Michigan St. - Sunday, 7:00 p.m.)
David Witkoff -- Georgetown (vs. UAB/Charlotte - Sunday 1:00 p.m.)
Luke Helmuth, Jack Thompson and Logan Thompson -- Messiah (DIII) – Sweet 16
Ryan Sabol and Austin Windsor -- Ohio Northern (DIII) – Sweet 16
Mackenzie Clapper -- Messiah (DIII Women)
The Crew Soccer Academy hosted Vardar SC Freiburg from Michigan at Crew Stadium over the weekend. The U-16 squad was defeated 2-1 with Nathan Kohl scoring the Black & Gold's lone goal. The CSA U-18s drew Vardar 1-1 in the nightcap, striker William Bayemi supplied the goal. The tally was Bayemi's sixth of the season
The U-16 team currently sits in sixth place in the Mid-America Division of the Central Conference, while the U-18s stand in fourth place after securing 21 points from its first nine games. Next weekend, CSA will travel north to Minnesota to face the Shattuck-Saint Mary's Soccer Academy and the Minnesota Thunder.
On the college front, several Crew Youth alumni were in action this weekend to close out the regular season in NCAA Division I:
Akron Zips (15-1-2) This Week: 1-0 W at Michigan State, 1-0 W vs. Western Michigan
With a pair of 1-0 results last week, Akron finishes the regular season as the top-ranked team in the nation. Chad Barson, Wil Trapp, Andrew Souders, Eric Stevenson and Thomas Schmitt will look to lead the Zips to a conference title as they host the MAC Tournament this upcoming weekend.
Xavier Musketeers (13-1-4) This Week: 6-0 W vs. Rhode Island, 5-0 W vs. Massachusetts
Matt and Will Walker each recorded two goals and an assist in Friday's night's 6-0 drubbing of Rhode Island in Cincinnati. Freshman Rhodes Moore also chipped in an assist in the win. On Sunday, the Musketeers continued their fine form, beating UMass 5-0. Will Walker and Nick Hagglund each contributed an assist to help Xavier to its highest win total in program history.
UCLA Bruins (12-2-3) This Week: 2-1 W vs. Stanford, 1-1 D vs. California
Matt Wiet helped the fourth-ranked Bruins to a pair of overtime results this week. UCLA beat Stanford in two overtime periods on Friday night. However, 120 minutes was not enough on Sunday as the Bruins drew the California Golden Bears 1-1 in Westwood. UCLA closes out its regular season on Friday against San Diego State.
Photo courtesy of Xavier Athletics.
The Crew Soccer Academy U-18 and U-16 squads were in action at Crew Stadium over the weekend as they hosted their affiliate program, the CSA Wolves from Michigan. Both teams suffered a 2-1 defeat to the Wolves. Rilee Woods scored for the U-18s, while William Bayemi tallied the U-16s lone goal.
The U-18 squad was missing centerback Alex Crognale (above) this weekend as the Maryland commit traveled to Washington, D.C. with the Crew Reserve squad. Crognale started and played the full 90 minutes on Sunday morning, helping the Crew reserves clinch the 2012 MLS Reserve League championship with a 2-0 victory over the D.C. United reserves.
On the international stage, CSA product Ben Swanson played 25 minutes in the United States U-17 National Team's 3-1 win in a friendly against Uruguay on Sunday. Swanson and the Stars and Stripes play again on Tuesday against Chile to open the Four-Nations Tournament in Santa Fe, Argentina.
As the NCAA Division I men's soccer season heats up, several Crew Youth products contributed to their universities this weekend. Here are some of the highlights:
Akron Zips (11-1-2) This Week: 1-0 W vs. Michigan, 2-1 W vs. West Virginia
Akron picked up two wins at home this week, first shutting out Michigan 1-0 on Tuesday before beating West Virginia 2-1 on Saturday. Wil Trapp, Chad Barson, Andrew Souders, Eric Stevenson, and Thomas Schmitt all contributed in the victories for the No. 3 ranked Zips. Akron takes on Ohio State on Tuesday in Columbus. The match will be aired on Big Ten Network.
Xavier Musketeers (9-0-4) This Week: 0-0 D at Duquesne, 2-1 W at St. Bonaventure
Will Walker, Matt Walker, and Rhodes Moore all saw significant minutes this week as Xavier drew Duquesne and beat St. Bonaventure on the road. The Musketeers, along with Maryland, are the only two undefeated teams in the country remaining.
Boston College Golden Eagles (8-4-3) This Week: 1-0 L vs. Brown, 1-0 W at Duke
Goalkeeper Justin Luthy had his 485 minute goalless streak snapped in Tuesday's 1-0 loss to Brown. The senior net minder rebounded on Friday to make four saves against Duke on his way to his fourth shutout in five games in the 1-0 win. The Golden Eagles host Virginia on Friday in their home finale.