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Union U19s draw West Chester United U23s in friendly

The Union battled their older and more seasoned opponents to a 3-3 draw last Saturday

Matt Ralph

With a couple weeks off from Development Academy play, the Philadelphia Union U19s hosted West Chester United’s U23 team for a friendly last Saturday at YSC Sports.

The West Chester side featured some familiar faces like Villanova duo Lucas Hodges and Andreas Bartosinski, who both finished out their college careers last fall; former St. Joe’s defender Bliss Harris and Philadelphia Union Academy grad Matt Greer, who has a season of eligibility left at Dartmouth College.

“For us, playing against an older team is exactly what we want,” Union U19 head coach Kevin Coleman said. “We weren’t able to impose our physicality and our speed the way we normally do.”

West Chester United controlled the early part of the game and capitalized with a goal — Brady McSwain made a nice save to keep it from becoming 2-0 — but as the Union settled into the game they started to create some chances of their own, eventually finding an equalizer through Iverson Brisma.

Brisma’s goal was one of three the Union scored on the day — Brenden Aaronson set up Issa Rayyan and Rayyan assisted a Jeremy Rafanello tap-in — in a game that ended in a 3-3 draw. Former Cabrini star A.J. Bishop had a would-be fourth goal for West Chester hit the net support and bounce out that wasn’t ruled a goal.

Officially, Troy Amspacher, a former Lock Haven University standout from Lancaster, had a brace for West Chester and former West Chester University forward Max Adarkwah also scored for the visitors.

West Chester United subbed in a lot of players at the hour mark since they had a United Soccer League of PA game the next day, which changed the complexion of the game. The Union were missing a number of key players to injury.

The Union return to Development Academy play at home against Seacoast United at YSC Sports at 3 p.m.

In other academy action from last weekend:

  • The U14 team made it six clean sheets out of their last seven games with a 6-0 win over BW Gottschee Academy at YSC Sports in league play on Saturday. The win was also the team’s sixth straight dating back to last November. The team remained unbeaten in 17 games this season. Anthony DeFillippo and Brandan Craig both had braces and Jackson Gilman and Nelson Pierre both added goals. Logan Gildea and Owen Moore combined for the clean sheet in goal.
  • The U13s ran their unbeaten streak to six games with an 8-2 win over BW Gottschee. Luke Martelli had a brace and six others found the back of the net, including Francis Westfield, Rafi Sanjuan, Matt Reed, Thomas Hastings, Connor Budniak and Beckham Aiman. Aiman’s 11th of the season has him now tied for the team lead with Marcelo Mazzzola.