Colorado Rapids U23

U23s crash out of PDL playoffs after late Calgary goal

Calgary Foothills F.C. extended their win streak to ten games after Ali Musse delivered a late strike to deny the Colorado Rapids Under-23s a spot in the Premier Development League Western Conference Final.

For eighty minutes, it seemed like nothing could get by Rapids goalkeeper Connor Gavigan (Florida Gulf Coast University). Throughout the match, Colorado’s defense appeared to bend but not break, as Gavigan was able to make save after save to deny Calgary’s aggressive attack.

Then – in the eighty-second minute – Foothills’ attacker Ali Musse fought off four Rapids defenders in the final third before sending a driven shot into the bottom corner of Gavigan’s net. Calgary held on to win 1-0.

For Colorado, the Foothills defense proved to be every bit as formidable and difficult to break down as their record suggested. Calgary has allowed only seven goals on the season.

The Rapids created very little in the match to justify a result, aside from three half-chances sparked in the thirty-fifth, seventy-third, and seventy-fifth minutes that were all sent over the bar. Throughout the game, the U23s seemed unable to complete incisive passes deep into Calgary’s half.

Colorado Senior Director of Soccer Development Brian Crookham praised the Under-23 side, saying the squad “represented the club well this summer” and that supporters will see some of the “talented guys … playing for years to come!”

The result ends the quest for silverware across all levels for the junior-level Colorado squads, as both the U17s and U18s were eliminated in the early rounds of their respective competitions.

Foothills will advance to the Western Conference Final, where they will face the winner of the F.C. Golden State Force and F.C. Tucson match.

Image Credit: CFFC

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