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Real Salt Lake Academy players pick up big honors

Jordan Allen picked up the USSDA Western Conference Player of the year at the U15/16 level for the RSL Academy at Casa Grade, AZ
Jordan Allen picked up the USSDA Western Conference Player of the year at the U15/16 level for the RSL Academy at Casa Grade, AZ

If you have been out to any of RSL's reserve matches this year, or even to any of the practices this summer you have likely seen a number of our Academy players in action and maybe not even known it. Well the end of the year awards are out from the US Soccer Developmental Academy and RSL-AZ guys picked up a number of honors, including both the Western Conference U17/18 player of the year: Maikon Orellan and the Western Conference U15/16 player of the year: Jordan Allen.

A number of other players at both levels were recognized as the best players at their positions as well, at the U17/18 level: Carlos Salcedo, Julio Alarcon and at the U15/16 level: Jose Navarro all were honored.

I have been very impressed with the level of skill and work rate of Allen when he has made appearances with the RSL reserves and while I know he has committed to playing college soccer at Virginia when graduates, I am holding out hope that we can get him signed to a Homegrown Player contract.

Here is the official press release:


Allen and Orrellana both named Player of the Year;

Grande Sports Academy Players Recognized in Western Conference

SANDY, Utah (Monday, July 23, 2012) - Five Real Salt Lake-Arizona Academy players were honored earlier this week at the 2011-12 U.S. Soccer Development Academy End of Year Awards. The USSDA End of Year awards consists of a Player of the Year, a Coach of the Year, and position awards for each conference and for both the U-15/16 and U-17/18 age categories. RSL U-15/16 player Jordan Allen and U-17/18 player Maikon Orrellana both received Player of the Year awards while fellow Grande Sports Academy standouts Carlos Salcedo - who is currently training with RSL's first team - Julio Alacron and Jose Navarro garnered USSDA Western Conference honors.

more after the jump:

Jordan Allen was named the Western Conference U-15/16 Player of the Year for splitting time with the RSL-AZ U-15/16 and U-17/18 teams. He scored seven goals as a forward, started 24 of the 25 games played for RSL-AZ, and was twice named USSDA Player of the Week for the 2011-12 season. He has participated in several RSL Reserve League games and was selected to join the U-18 Men's National Team as a right back. Jordan has verbally committed to the University of Virginia after his 2013 graduation from Grande Sports Academy.

USSDA named Maikon Orrellana the Western Conference U-17/18 Player of the Year. He started 24 of the 26 games as a forward for RSL-AZ. Orrellana lead the team with 14 goals to help the RSL-AZ U-17/18 finish third in the Western Conference.

Joining Orrellana and Jordan as players named to the West Conference team of the USSDA End of the Year Awards are U-17/18 defenders Carlos Salcedo and Julio Alacron, and U-15/16 forward Jose Navarro. Salcedo and Alacron provided the stellar wall of defense that limited other divisional opponents to 14 goals and 34 goals overall. Navarro assisted the U-15/16 team to a second place finish in the Western Conference with 18 goals this season.

Grande Sports Academy, home of the Real Salt Lake - Arizona Academy, is the first and only youth soccer residency program in the US affiliated with a professional Major League Soccer team, Real Salt Lake. The program focuses on preparing talented kids for professional ranks by providing them with state-of-the-art equipment, training facilities, and coaching by former US National Team, Major League Soccer and international professional players. The RSL-AZ teams have been nationally recognized as one of the premier clubs in the US Soccer Development Academy, and recently the U-15/16 team finished third at the 2011 Finals Week.

2011-12 U.S. Soccer Development Academy End of Year Awards
West Conference U-17/18:
Goalkeeper: Jake McGuire, Chivas USA
Defender: Oscar Sorto, LA Galaxy
Defender: Slater Meehan, Santa Cruz Breakers Academy
Defender: Carlos Salcedo, Real Salt Lake AZ
Defender: Julio Alarcon, Real Salt Lake AZ
Midfielder: Bryce Alderson, Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Midfielder: Juan Samayoa, Real So Cal
Midfielder: Jose Villarreal, LA Galaxy
Forward: Caleb Clarke, Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Forward: Maikon Orellana, Real Salt Lake AZ
Forward: John Chronopoulos, Santa Cruz Breakers Academy

West Conference Coach of the Year (U-17/18): Eric Yamamoto, De Anza Force
West Conference Player of the Year (U-17/18): Maikon Orellana, Real Salt Lake AZ

West Conference U-15/16:
Goalkeeper: JT Marcinkowski, San Jose Earthquakes
Defender: Christian De Luna, San Jose Earthquakes
Defender: Jalen Markey, Seattle Sounders FC
Defender: Michael Amick, De Anza Force
Defender: Jose Ocampo, Crossfire Premier
Midfielder: Marco Delgado, Chivas USA
Midfielder: Jose Garcia, Arsenal FC
Midfielder: Rolando Munoz, LA Galaxy
Forward: Jordan Allen, Real Salt Lake AZ
Forward: Justin Dhillon, LA Galaxy
Forward: Jose Navarro, Real Salt Lake AZ

West Conference Coach of the Year (U-15/16): Matt Tutton, Pateadores
West Conference Player of the Year (U-15/16): Jordan Allen, Real Salt Lake AZ

I think those are great honors for the RSL Academy players and staff, now it will be interesting to see if we find a way to bridge the gap between the Academy and getting kids to the full team?