VANCOUVER, BC – It’s gameday!
Vancouver Whitecaps FC U-16 Residency will host the club’s first-ever USSDA playoff match in Canada tonight, when they face Georgia United U-16 in the quarter-final at SFU Field #4 (6 p.m. PT kickoff – admission is free of charge).
Here’s a look at the roster that will be looking to make history for the club.
There are 24 players on Vancouver’s U-16 roster – and 18 of them call British Columbia home. That includes six players from Burnaby, the location of tonight’s knockout match.
The rest come from Alberta (2), Manitoba (2) and Ontario (2).
By city: Burnaby (6), Coquitlam (5), Edmonton (2), Surrey (2), Winnipeg (2), Vancouver (2), Kitchener (1), Langley (1), North Vancouver (1), Orleans (1), Port Coquitlam (1)
Among the Burnaby boys are brothers Matthew and Michael Baldisimo.
Matthew is a centre back, while his younger brother Michael is a defensive midfielder/defender. Both came through the Whitecaps FC Pre-Residency program.
Their oldest brother, Mark, is also a Whitecaps FC Residency graduate.
Talk about a “family club.”
SAGNO'S SCORING PROWESS
Vancouver’s leading scorer this season was Daniel Sagno, who scored 20 goals in 31 appearances. The 17-year-old forward was born in Guinea, before moving to Winnipeg as a child. Read more about his remarkable journey here.
Sagno is just one piece of the puzzle for the U-16s.
Eleven different players scored for the team this season. Here are the top five goalscorers:
Daniel Sagno (Winnipeg): 20 goals
Gloire Amanda (Edmonton): 15 goals
Terran Campbell (Burnaby): 13 goals
Cole Morokhovich (Coquitlam): 8 goals
Munir Saleh (Kitchener): 6 goals
Goalkeepers Luciano Trasolini (Burnaby) and Aidan Aylward (Orleans) more or less split duties between the posts this season, helping Vancouver to one of the best defensive records in the league.
They’re in fine form, too. The ‘Caps conceded just one goal in three Round of 32 matches last month.
‘CAPS FOR CANADA
Six different Whitecaps FC U-16 Residency players represented Canada at this year’s CONCACAF U-17 Championship: goalkeeper Luciano Trasolini (Burnaby), defenders Matthew Baldisimo (Burnaby) and Kadin Chung (Port Coquitlam), midfielder Munir Saleh (Kitchener), and forwards Terran Campbell (Burnaby) and Daniel Sagno (Winnipeg).
Baldisimo, Chung, and Sagno all found the back of the net for Canada, who posted a 3W-1L-1D record.
Kickoff for tonight’s match is set for 6 p.m. PT. Admission is free and fans are encouraged to attend and show their support. The winner of tonight’s quarter-final advances to the USSDA Final Four in Carson, California. The semifinals will take place on July 16, followed by the championship match on July 18.