Sean De Silva had his second goal of the weekend as Team 5 took a 1-0 victory against Team 4 in the final scrimmage of the USL PRO Combine presented by Umbro on Sunday morning at IMG Academy. The win allowed Team 5 to finish the weekend undefeated, without conceding a goal, with a record of 2-0-1.
De Silva’s goal came 20 minutes from the end, as he was able to run onto a pass from Brian Greco and put away his finish from inside the penalty area. The former College of Charleston standout had scored the only goal in Team 5’s other win, a 1-0 victory against Team 2 on Saturday afternoon, and had a good performance along with a number of his teammates as they had the better of much of the contest.
Team 5 had started the game off on the front foot, and came close to take the lead a number of times before the break. Matt Seinfeld’s low cross in the 18th minute was partially blocked after a good run into the right side of the penalty area, but the deflection came to Ferretty Sousa, whose shot was well saved by Bret Mollon.
Sousa wasn’t shy of having a go when the opportunity came, shooting over from 25 yards a few minutes later, and Team 5 continued to push for an opener, Garrett Losee’s cross intended for Leigh Veidman being cleared to safety by Dominic Cutrofello. Veidman then went close after a good pass from Seinfeld set him up on the right side of the penalty area, but his shot hit the left post and rebounded to safety.
Team 4 wasn’t able to hold as much possession, but came close to opening the scoring in the second half when Gabe Causse curled a low free kick from the left toward the bottom-right corner, only for John Viscosi to turn the effort around the post. On balance, however, Team 5 was good value for its win as De Silva’s finish nine minutes later proved the game-winner.
TEAM 2 3, TEAM 3 2: Second-half goals by Raffi Gregorian and Andrew Derayeh allowed Team 2 to end the weekend with a win as they were able to overcome a pair of goals by Sasa Plavsic for Team 3 that earned the former Victoria Highlanders’ forward the weekend’s Golden Boot with four goals.
Both teams had chances early, but it was Team 2 that opened the scoring just under 20 minutes in. After a good run down the left by Logan McDaniel created space for a cross, Macca Wilde was there at the near post to provide a good first-time finish from the low, driven ball in.
That would be the way the game would stay until the halftime break but Team 3 would get on even terms early in the second half from a free kick just outside the penalty area. Plavsic struck the effort, which deflected off the top of the wall and into the back of the net.
Team 2 would regain the lead just four minutes later, Gregorian finding space and the opportunity to send a beautiful chip over Robert Mueller and in from 35 yards out. Team 2 would add to its lead nine minutes later as Derayeh, a teammate of Wilde’s with the PDL’s Toronto Lynx, curled a finish in after cutting in from the left side.
Plavsic was able to pull back a late goal for Team 3, following up to put away his own rebound from close range after a back-post header wasn’t handled cleanly by Sean Teepen, but Team 2 was able to close out the victory, Jamiel Hardware almost adding to his side’s lead as he hit the crossbar late on with a fine left-footed shot from the right.
TEAM 6 1, TEAM 1 0: A late goal by Michael Stewart gave Team 6 victory, and handed Team 1 its first defeat of the weekend on the first goal it conceded in the three scrimmages.
Stewart’s goal came just two minutes before the end as the center back was able to head home a corner from the right to lift his side to victory. Team 1 had the better of an even game in terms of chances, but was unable to find a decisive finish as it finished with a record of 2-1-0.
Team 1 had the better of the early going, Chris Tsonis having a pair of chances to open the scoring with the first going wide of the right post and the second being charged down by a defender. Ralph Lundy also went close, hitting the post with a well-struck shot.
While both midfields played relatively well, both defenses remained on top for the most-part in the second half. Lundy again went close for Team 1, his shot from the left flashing wide of the right post, and Oscar Barboza fired a long-range effort that went over the crossbar. In the end, however, it was Stewart’s goal that proved decisive.