Charlotte Independence defeated Cedar Stars Rush to make it three wins from three in USL Academy play. Photo by Cameron Koubek
The USL Academy Eastern Conference Event concluded in fine fashion on Monday as all 12 teams returned to the field for their third and final matches.
North Carolina FC and Chicago FC United played one of the event’s most entertaining matches in a 2-2 draw to start the day.
A second half Luke Hille brace (his third brace of the event) paced NCFC with goals three minutes apart, while Dalton Hass and Blaine Mable each found the back of the net for Chicago.
Elsewhere, Louisville City cruised to an 8-0 win over FC Miami City, the second time the Kentucky club’s offense has exploded for seven or more goals in a game at the event.
Zachary Schonwetter scored a hat trick in 16 minutes, but the pick of the bunch was yet another excellent free kick from Carlos Moguel.
NCFC's Luke Hille (right) scored a brace in all three of his team's games at the event. Photo by Cameron Koubek
In the 10 a.m. kickoffs, two undefeated teams faced off with Charlotte Independence taking on Cedar Stars Rush. JP Mbuthia smashed home the opener in the first minute before Nicholas Kaloukian equalized on 64 minutes. The game grew chippy toward the end, and Joseph Skinner was the man of the moment as his top-class 84th minute free kick earned the Independence a 2-1 win.
Tormenta FC's 2-1 win over Pittsburgh saw them finish with the best record in the Premier Division. Photo by Cameron Koubek
Tampa Bay Rowdies also maintained a perfect record at the event, beating Boston Bolts 6-0.
In the final round of matches, Tormenta FC grabbed a hard-fought 2-1 win against Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC. Ethan Misere and Thomas Stoever were among the goals for the South Georgia side as they remained unbeaten.
Colorado Pride Switchbacks came out on top against Weston FC for their first victory in USL Academy play.
Weston jumped out to an early lead through Noah Mansilla, but first half goals from three different Switchbacks players were enough to secure the result despite a late second score for Weston.
Attention will now turn to the inaugural USL Academy National Event in Tampa, Florida this May. The National Event will feature teams from both the Western and Eastern Conferences, and will include a U13 age group in addition to the U17 age group. For more information on that event, visit usl-academy.com over the coming months or search #USLAcademy on social media.