Much like the First Team, the Crew Soccer Academy had the week off from action. However, that doesn't mean the week was news-free on the Crew Youth front.
Coming off a second-place at the AGS Cup in Spain, the United States U-17 National Team will travel to Argentina this week for a four-team tournament that includes Chile, Panama, and host Argentina. Prior to the tournament, CSA products Benny Swanson, Carter Richardson, and Ahinga Selemani will play Uruguay in a friendly on October 21. When the tournament concludes, the US will play another friendly against an opponent that is yet to be determined.
On the college stage, several Crew Youth Alumni saw action this week. Here are some of the highlights:
Akron Zips (9-1-2) This Week: 2-0 W at Penn State, 2-0 W at Northern Illinois
The Zips recorded a pair of road shutouts this week against Penn State and Northern Illinois. Five Crew Youth alumni are regular feature's in Caleb Porter's lineup as Akron hopes to challenge for its second College Cup title in three years.
Xavier Musketeers (8-0-3) This Week: 2-2 D vs. Dayton
The Musketeers remained undefeated over the weekend, tying in-state and conference rival Dayton 2-2 at home. Will Walker scored his fifth goal of the season in the draw, finishing off a long ball from his twin brother Matt.
Boston College Golden Eagles (7-3-3) This Week: 1-0 W vs. Dartmouth, 0-0 D vs. Clemson
Senior captain Justin Luthy posted his third and fourth shutouts of the season last week as Boston College beat Dartmouth and drew ACC opponent Clemson. Luthy has not given up a tally in his last 403 minutes in goal for the Golden Eagles.
UCLA Bruins (9-2-2) This Week: 4-3 W at. San Diego State
Matt Wiet helped the fourth-ranked Bruins rebound from last week's loss to Washington, captaining UCLA to a 4-3 win over San Diego State. Wiet and the Bruins will be idle this week as the team's next match comes October 26 on the road against Oregon State.
The Crew Soccer Academy swept its matches for the second-straight weekend. The U-16 squad defeated the Cleveland Internationals 1-0 behind Jalim Bayo's tally. Nathan Kohl assisted on the match's lone goal. The U-18 side took down the Internationals 4-2 with Nicholas Parianos, Thomas Wiseman, Andrew McKelvey and Alex Bumpus scoring in the affair.
In other news, CSA goalkeeper Carter Richardson earned an invite to the United States U-17 Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla. The Dublin native will join fellow CSA product Benny Swanson playing under Richie Williams for the Stars & Stripes.
On the college stage, plenty of Crew Youth alumni were in action over the weekend, here are some of the highlights:
Akron Zips (7-1-2) This Week: 5-0 W vs. Florida Atlantic
Chad Barson, Wil Trapp, and Eric Stevenson all started in the Zips' weekend win over Florida Atlantic. Stevenson scored two goals and added an assist in the victory to earn TopDrawerSoccer.com National Team of the Week honors.
Louisville Cardinals (8-4-0) This Week: 3-0 W vs. DePaul, 2-1 W at Syracuse
The Cardinals earned a pair of Big East wins last week to move to 8-4-0 on the season. Alex Obbey came on as a sub in both matches for Ken Lolla's side. Louisville will host Indiana on Wednesday night
Xavier Musketeers (8-0-2) This Week: 3-2 W vs. Saint Louis, 2-1 W vs. Butler
Xavier opened Atlantic 10 play with a 3-2 victory over Saint Louis at home. Will Walker tallied twice, while his brother Matt chipped in an assist in the win. Matt Walker added another assist in Sunday's win against Butler. Will Walker's brace earned him a spot in College Soccer News' National Team of the Week.
Boston College Golden Eagles (6-3-2) This Week: 1-0 W at Wake Forest
Senior Justin Luthy made eight saves to hold No. 15 Wake Forest scoreless as the Golden Eagles improved to 6-3-2 in 2012. The Crew Youth product has posted two clean sheets on the season.
Photo credit: BCEagles.com
Conference play resumed around NCAA Division I soccer this week. Here are some highlights from Crew Youth alumni playing around the country:
Akron Zips (6-1-2) This Week: 4-0 W vs. Buffalo
The Zips moved to 2-0-0 in MAC play by beating Buffalo 4-0 on Saturday at Cub Cadet Field. Crew Youth product Eric Stevenson assisted on Akron's third goal in the romp.
Louisville Cardinals (5-4-0) This Week: 2-1 L at Rutgers
After upsetting Notre Dame last week, the Cardinals dropped a 2-1 result on the road to Rutgers. Alex Obbey nearly had the equalizer in the 78th minute, but his attempt was blocked by a Scarlet Knights defender.
Xavier Musketeers (6-0-2) This Week: 5-0 W vs. Thomas More
Xavier wrapped up non-conference play with a 5-0 victory over Thomas More. Matt Walker had a goal and two assists in the win. Next up, the Musketeers put its unbeaten record on the line at home against Saint Louis on Friday.
Ohio State Buckeyes (4-6-1) This Week: 4-1 W vs. Butler, 3-2 L at Michigan
The Buckeyes scored a season-high four goals on Wednesday against Butler. Sage Gardner had the fourth tally of the evening, converting from the penalty spot for his first goal of the season. OSU dropped a heartbreaker in Ann Arbor on Sunday, losing 3-2 in overtime.
UCLA Bruins- (7-1-2) This Week: 3-1 W at Stanford, 3-1 W at California
Matt Wiet captained the No. 6 ranked Bruins to a pair of 3-1 PAC12 victories in Northern California this weekend. UCLA will host Oregon State and Washington in the upcoming weekend.
Also in action, the Crew Jrs. U-16 and U-18 squads swept the weekend with both sides beating Shattuck-Saint Mary's and the Minnesota Thunder.
Photo Credit: GoXavier.com
Many Crew Youth products began conference play at their respective universiities this week. Here are some highlights from across the country:
Akron Zips- (5-1-2) This Week: 2-0 vs. Bowling Green
The Zips kicked off MAC play with a 2-0 win against in-state rival Bowling Green. Captain Chad Barson, Wil Trapp, Andrew Souders, Eric Stevenson, and Thomas Schmitt all contributed to the shutout.
Louisville Cardinals (5-3-0) This Week: 4-0 W vs. Ohio State, 2-1 W vs. Notre Dame
The University of Louisville responded after a loss to rival Kentucky with a 4-0 dismantling of Ohio State before knocking off No. 4 Notre Dame to open Big East play. Alex Obbey started and registered a shot in each of the victories.
Xavier Musketeers- (5-0-2) This week: 2-0 W at IPFW, 1-0 W vs. Missouri St.
The Musketeers earned back-to-back victories this week with wins over IPFW and Missouri State. Crew Soccer Academy product Will Walker registered an assist in the win against IPFW, while his brother Matt's blast in the 81st minute broke the 0-0 stalemate to lead Xavier to victory over Missouri State.
UCLA Bruins- (5-1-2) This Week: 1-1 D at UCSB, 1-0 W at Cal Poly
Captain Matt Wiet led the Bruins to a 1-1 stalemate with UC Santa Barbara in a nationally televised affair on Friday night before beating Cal Poly on Sunday. Wiet played in every minute of both matches.
Photo Credit: UofLsports.com
After spending the summer playing with the United States U-15 and U-17 National Teams, Crew Soccer Academy standout Benny Swanson has accepted an offer to participate in the US U-17 Residency program in Bradenton, Florida.
The 15-year-old Grove City native hopes his decision will help him secure a spot in next year's U-17 World Cup.
"It's a great opportunity. It was kind of hard to pass up," Swanson said. "The [FIFA U-17] World Cup is next year in Dubai. I would like to make that roster, hopefully. If I don't, I hope I just learn every day in training in that environment with that pro mentality."
"It's great for our organization," Crew Technical Director Brian Bliss said. "Obviously it's a little bit premature to be speaking about Benny as a future pro for the club, but he's on the right track. It gives credibility to our organization on the youth side as to what we're doing."
Bliss says residency can only help Swanson's promising skill set.
"Right now, he's only getting three or four days of training each week, he's going to get five or six days each week training with the top players in the country at his age [in Bradenton]." Bliss explained. "He's got the ability to break down players off of the dribble and create on his own. He works for the good of the team in terms of being a team player. He's got an eye for the pass and can deliver it. He's got a multitude of skills and being in that environment for the next year, it's going to make him a better player."
The young midfielder's drive and skill set reminds Bliss of a certain US Men's National Team mainstay.
"He's got a lot of things Michael Bradley had," Bliss said. "Bradley grew physically really quick at the end, but he was also undersized. [Bradley] had the ability to dribble, pass, create, and had the same attitude and hunger for the game that Benny has. There are some comparisons. They may be unfair because Michael is a full national team player and I don't want to put pressure on [Swanson], but he's got a lot of this same [skills]."
Being in the same sentence with Bradley and others who attended the U-17 Residencty previously such as Landon Donovan, Brek Shea, and Eddie Gaven is still surreal Swanson says, but he remains determined to one day don the Black & Gold as a professional.
"It's kind of surreal, but I've been working hard. That's where hard work will get you," Swanson said. "The Crew has helped me a lot to progress as a player and as a person."
"[Playing professionally for the Crew] would be a dream come true," he finished.