FRISCO, Texas - The FC Dallas U-18 Academy team took their first step towards Finals Week in Houston with a big 3-0 win over McLean Youth Soccer of Virginia. Homegrown striker Jonathan Top scored a brace in the win, and midfielder Flavio Guzman tacked on FCD's third goal of the night in the late stages.
Top's first goal came late in the first half as the Virginia side fought to hold the home team at bay throughout the first 45 minutes. Just six minutes in midfielder Kellyn Acosta struck a ball that hit the crossbar for FCD's first scoring chance. Fourteen minutes later Acosta took a corner kick that found the head of Jose de la Tejera in the box, but sailed just wide of the far post.
In the 34th minute Top and midfielder David Robledo put together a nice passing sequence that ended with Top getting off a shot that was saved by goalkeeper Mason Fish. Five minutes after that Robledo fired off a shot from the top of the box that looked to be headed to the back of the net, but it took a deflection off a defender and went wide of the left post.
A minute before the end of the half, de la Tejera sent a throughball in to Top in the box. The Homegrown forward chipped the ball over the challenging 'keeper and into the back of the net to give Dallas the 1-0 lead.
FC Dallas continued to keep the pressure high in the second half, forcing the goalkeeper into three saves in a three-minute span early in the half.
In the 58th minute, FCD was awarded a free kick just outside the right corner of the 18 yard box. Captain Mikey Ambrose stepped up for the kick and sent it to the far post where it found Dallas defender Mark Ashby. McLean's 'keeper followed the ball toward Ashby, but the defender headed the ball across the goalmouth and it was pounced on by Top to give FC Dallas a 2-0 lead.
Feeling the pressure of a 2-0 deficit, McLean started to get their attack together and even out the possession game. But in the 80th minute, second half substitute Flavio Guzman put forth a fine individual effort as he dribbled the ball into the box around three defenders before sending home FCD's third and final goal to round out the scoring.
The U-18s' next opponent also came away with a victory on Monday night, as Real Salt Lake AZ beat Sockers FC 2-0. FC Dallas will take on RSL at 8 p.m. on Tuesday night on Field 11 at the Complex at FC Dallas Stadium.
Top - 44'
Top - 58'
Guzman - 80'
FC Dallas U-18 lineup: Sanchez, Ambrose, Guillen, Ashby, Rochowski (Frankenfeld 68'), Acosta (Ortiz 72')), Robledo (Guzman 72'), Carrizales, Garcia (Gallegos 68'), de la Tejera (Edet 82'), Top (Laverde 84').