Loons Pick Up Pair of Wins Over St. Louis


This Sunday, on what was an absolutely PERFECT day for soccer, both the U15 and U17 Academy teams took on St. Louis CITY SC. The young Loons earned two wins for their exceptional efforts, thanks in large part to their refusal to take their foot off the gas until the final whistle blew.


It was a particularly good day for Coach Jamie Carroll-Rolfe and the U15s, whose 4-0 win saw the lads excel in nearly every aspect of the game. A true team effort saw the Loons score in several different ways, breaking down their opponents and subsequently staying compact and composed to preserve the clean sheet.

Everyone on the pitch had good moments, making it hard to pick out any standout performers on the day. Max Harwood’s strike from the top of the box put the hosts up early, slightly against the run of play. MNUFC firmly seized momentum with their second goal when Carson McDevitt doubled the lead before the half, heading home a well-placed corner at the back post.

The second half started with a bang, as Brody Schauf fired home a fantastic shot from an incredibly tight angle to put his side up 3-0. The visitors continued to push, as they had all game, but the deficit definitely dampened their spirits. Pressure from the Loons would see the boys add a fourth before it was all said and done, with Sam Roseblade’s cross teeing up Tim Dennis for the clean finish after winning the ball high up the pitch.

Both goalkeepers (Mateo Molina and Keane Perkins) put in great shifts, with Molina coming up big in a one-on-one in the first half to keep CITY off the scoresheet. Jadan Bernard made several piercing runs from left back, adding creativity and dimension to his team’s attack. The list of top performers goes on, but Carroll-Rolfe said it best after the big win.

“I was very pleased with the performance,” he said. “We showed outstanding teamwork and a great desire to win, which will give us good momentum heading into the Flex event in Maryland. It was tough to pick out any one performance, as I thought every player had great moments and the result really was a full team effort.”


The U17s likewise took all three points, but an 11-goal thriller made for a much different match. Two first-half goals saw Justin Ferguson’s team go into the break with the advantage, but a hectic second half made it anything but an easy result to hold onto.

Both teams traded goals throughout the second half, turning 2-0 into 6-5 by the final whistle. The Loons’ goals were coming largely through breaking their opponents down quickly and efficiently, while most of the goals they conceded came from temporary lapses in positioning. All-in-all, it was a resilient, impressive performance from the guys, who will be happy to take the win and the lessons they were taught in the back.

Five different players found the back of the net for the home side, including Aidan Martinez (2), Issa Saidi, Will Smith, Gavin Stevenson, and Danny Boakai. This all-hands-on-deck approach pleased Head Coach Justin Ferguson, who hopes this momentum will carry on.

“We had a lot of different goal scorers today, and I think that’s always a good sign,” Ferguson said. “It means a lot of different players can contribute in different moments, and it’s a good thing for those guys to gain some confidence ahead of the Flex event. The group we started was very young, and a lot of players gained some valuable experience.”

As both coaches mentioned, the next hurdle for the Academy will be the MLS NEXT Flex Tournament in Boyds, Maryland. All three squads will be heading to the Maryland SoccerPlex from May 10 to May 14, with a chance to qualify for the MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs on the line.