U-23s: City wins 4-0 Over Fusion International in first scrimmage
Mix of pro players and U23 squad give Orlando victory in friendlyTeam 1 2 Final
Orlando City 3 1 4
Fusion International 0 0 0
OC – Luzunaris 1 (unassisted) 26
OC- Helm 1 (unassisted) 27
OC- Sowers 1 (Campbell) 61
OC- Russo 1 (penalty)
Orlando City U23s- Sean Kelley, Ryan Griffin, Wes Allen, Erik Ustruck (Alu 55), Charlie Campbell (Edvin Worley 63), Ricardo Campbell (Harrison Heath 55), Andrew Helm, Nick Sowers (Nick Russo 60), Adama Mbengue (Steven Williams 65) , Matt Luzunaris (Jason Wallace 45)
SANFORD, Fla. –The Orlando City U23s, with the help of players from the pro squad, defeated Fusion International 4-0 on a Monday afternoon friendly at the Seminole Soccer Complex. Four different Lions scored in the victory over Fusion International, which is comprised of many players from high school powerhouse Montverde Academy.
In the first half, Orlando scored a trio of goals to take an early lead. Pro-team Forward Matt Luzunaris’ goal highlighted the first half scoring as a deflected shot from Adama Mbengue landed right in front of the forward five feet from goal – with the former UCF Knight blasting it home in the 26th minute to give City the 1-0 lead. Andrew Helm and Nick Sowers also contributed with goals in the first half to give the Lions a comfortable three goal lead heading into halftime.
The second half was very much a defensive struggle, with each team denying corners and attacks from their respective forwards. Orlando City backup Goalkeeper Sean Kelley, who started in the 2012 season opener for the pro team, didn’t allow a goal in the second half – earning a clean sheet on the day.
Defender Ryan Griffin, a recent graduate from the University of Tampa, had an impressive showing for the Lions in his first appearance with Orlando. Griffin played the full 90 while anchoring the Lion defense in front of Kelley to not allow a goal in the friendly.
To close out the match, Nicolas Russo converted his penalty try in the 90th minute to give City four goals on the afternoon and the win.
After the match, U23 Head Coach Joe Avallone commented on his team’s performance and what he expects out of his club moving forward.
“It was a great first run for us,” he said. “Our goal is to implement the same style of play as the first team. It’s a good first test for the team.”
The U23s are preparing for their season opener in the Premier Development League against Fort Lauderdale Schulz Academy on May 4 at 7 p.m. All U23 home matches will be held at the Seminole Soccer Complex.