Atlantic Division Battle in Academy

CHICAGO – In US Development Academy action this weekend, South Charlotte took a first half lead, but allowed CASL to climb back for a 2-1 victory, keeping CASL’s placed atop the U17/18 Atlantic Conference.

South Charlotte, who had control of the possession and a majority of the chances in the first half, took the lead on a penalty kick that was converted by Michael Davis.

Down a goal, CASL head coach Jay Howell decided to take a risk and switch from a 4-3-3 formation to a 3-4-3 at the break, leaving just three defenders on his back line and taking control of the game by picking up his team’s attack.

Howell’s decision paid off in the second half, as Michael Cantrell served in a cross from the left side behind the South Charlotte defense. Defender Matt Arnold, who joined the attack during the build-up, got on the end of the cross, settled it with his first touch and leveled the score with a well-placed shot.

Less than 10 minutes later, another CASL defender, Austin King, got on the scoreboard and gave his team its first lead of the day. King ran into the box to get on the end of a free kick, one-timing the ball, which deflected off a South Charlotte defender before ending up in the back of the net.

“We feel disappointed about not getting the result, but CASL made the right move in the second half,” said South Charlotte coach Derrick Leeson. “Good teams keep pressuring even when they’re down and CASL did that, and got the goals.”

CASL will travel to Detroit next weekend to take on Vardar on Saturday, April 19 and the Michigan Wolves on Sunday, April 20. The U-17/18 squad will look to continue their current six-game winning streak when it takes on the two Great Lakes Conference opponents. South Charlotte will take a break from Development Academy action before continuing Atlantic Conference play hosting Greensboro on April 26.

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