FRISCO - The three-peat is alive and well.
With a 3-0 victory over Real Salt Lake (AZ) on Friday afternoon, the FC Dallas U-16 team secured a spot in the United States Soccer Development Academy National Championship Game. The win saw Homegrown forward Jesus Ferreira score a brace for Dallas, while forward Brayan Padilla added a goal of his own.
The win puts Dallas into the U-16 National Final for the third-straight year, with Dallas hoping to claim its third-consecutive title in the age group.
Held in Carson, California, the USSDA semifinal saw Dallas dressed in its blue and white-striped away kit while RSL was decked out in all red. The match began as a cagey affair, with neither side able to claim a clear-cut chance in the opening 10 minutes.
Then on 14 minutes, the breakthrough came courtesy of some brilliant work by Dallas midfielder Thomas Roberts.
Roberts was able to bolt to the end line near the RSL goal before crossing the ball to Ferreira, who easily finished from two yards out for the game's opening goal. Roberts also came close to scoring a goal of his own in the 25th minute, but his shot was parried away by RSL goalkeeper David Ochoa.
Dallas controlled large portions of the game, but RSL did have a chance to pull even in the 31st minute. Midfielder Julian Vazquez drew a foul inside the penalty box and midfielder Sebastian Soto stepped up to take the spot kick.
However, Dallas goalkeeper Michael Collodi dove to his right side and pushed the shot away, helping Dallas take a 1-0 lead into halftime.
The second half saw more heroics from Collodi, who saved a point-blank volley in the 49th minute to preserve the lead. Four minutes later, the lead was 2-0 for Dallas.
Ferreira was again the goalscorer, polishing off another ball sent across the goalmouth. Homegrown forward Bryan Reynolds was also involved in the buildup for Dallas on the play.
GOAL - DALLAS. Brayan Padilla with a tidy finish past the 'keeper after an assist from Edwin Cerrillo. 3-0 to the 2X defending champions!— FC Dallas Youth (@FCDallasYouth) July 14, 2017
After a pair of substitutions for Dallas that saw midfielders Edwin Cerrillo and Adrian Munoz enter the game, Padilla put the contest to bed with Dallas' third of the match. A great through ball from Cerrillo was met by Padilla at the back post, who coolly tucked the ball away for his 31st goal of the season.
The commanding victory takes Dallas into Sunday's U-16 National Final against Atlanta United, which defeated Vancouver Whitecaps 2-0 in Friday's second semifinal.
Sunday's final will be played in Carson at 5:30 p.m. (CST).