After winning their group in the USSDA playoffs last week, Chivas USA's U-18 Academy team found out on Tuesday who they would face in "Finals Week." The Junior Goats have been matched up against Maryland's Bethesda-Olney U-18s, in a game to be played July 7 at the StubHub Center complex.
The last time the CUSA U-18s were at Finals Week was in 2012, when the format was another level of group play and they couldn't advance to the national final. This time around, it looks like the format of the tournament is a knockout one, so if they beat Bethesda-Olney, they'll move on to the semifinals.
The Maryland side finished first in their division this season, and were the top seed overall coming into the USSDA playoffs. In contrast, Chivas qualified for the playoffs as a wild card, and finished fourth in their division (though they are the only team left alive from said division). But it's the playoffs, and prior records don't matter as much in a winner takes all match-up.
One interesting tidbit about the opponents: their assistant coach is Philip Gyau, a former U.S. Men's National Team international and father of former U.S. youth international Joe Gyau, who's playing professionally in Germany at the moment.
It doesn't appear that times on the quarterfinal round games have been released yet, but since they will be at "home," it makes sense to cheer on the boys if you can and give them a bit of a home field advantage. Best of luck to Chivas USA's U-18s, and keep up the good work!
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