Defense carries De Anza Force to first place

Max Ornstil joined the De Anza Force this season and has been an impact player as the squad has moved into first place in the Northwest Division. Shannon Huffer

Defender/midfielder Max Ornstil is proving to be quite a find for the De Anza Force under-17/18 team.

Teamed with fellow defender Matt Amick and keeper Paul Blanchette, defensive-minded De Anza Force has surged to first place in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy’s Northwest Division, ahead of the likes of the Seattle Sounders and Vancouver Whitecaps.

De Anza Force is coming off consecutive 1-0 division shutouts on Saturday and Sunday over the third-place Crossfire Premier (4-4-2, 7-5-5) and second-place Seattle Sounders (5-3-1, 7-6-3) on goals by striker Nick Lima and midfielder Edson Cardona. Lima's goal was his third of the season, and it was the second for Cardona, who was assisted by Alfred Edmonds and Luke Brubaker. The weekend shutouts mean De Anza has allowed only six goals in eight league matches and 18 goals in 18 overall contests.

Ornstil, who has signed with Santa Clara, has gotten into the offensive play, as well, scoring a pair of goals for a team whose 6-2 record leads the division. He has appeared in all 18 matches for the Force this season, starting 17 of them.

"Max was a guy that I saw playing on a club team who had some characteristics that were very good and I asked him to come out," said De Anza Force coach Eric Yamamoto, who also coaches at Santa Clara. "Unlike the guys who have been involved in either ODP or the regional or national team programs, this year is his first year playing at this level, but he's stepped in and has been a tremendous performer and earned a college scholarship."

"I started about four months ago. A teammate of mine, Dylan Autran, started training with the team, and he kind of brought me in. In the beginning, it's kind of a culture shock. It's a lot more fast-paced and a big change," Ornstil said.

"But I definitely adapted well and it took me a couple of training sessions, maybe a week or two, to get into the run of things. But it's really easy in this environment to get used to the new level."

Ornstil is one of three Force players headed to Santa Clara. He will be joined by striker James Huffer, who leads San Jose-based DeAnza Force with a team-high eight goals, and Ryan Masch, who is currently sidelined by an injury.

Masch, a midfielder, was among the team’s top scorers with three goals, but he underwent meniscus surgery last week on his right knee that was injured a month ago and will sideline him until the summer.

"My teammates have been really supportive. A bunch of them come and visit and ask how I'm doing," said Masch. "My attitude is that I'll bounce back really quickly. I have a lot of time to get back into training and to get back into a rhythm."


Central Conference, Texas Division

Solar Chelsea 1, Houston Dynamo 0: Toryima Asom's goal in the 10th minute stood up as the second-place Solar Chelsea (6-2-5, 8-4-6) blanked the sixth-place Houston Dynamo (4-4-3, 5-8-3) in the nine-team division on Saturday.

FC Dallas 3, Texas Rush 0: Goals by Alberto Galvan, Antonio Aguilar and Abdulraham Yassine were the difference as the third-place FC Dallas (5-3-5, 6-4-6) blanked the eighth-place Rush (2-4-3, 2-8-4) on Saturday.

FC Dallas 1, Texas SC Houston 0: Brandon Aubrey's goal in the 64th minute lifted the first-place Dallas Texans (9-0-3, 11-0-6) over the fourth-place Texas SC Houston (5-4-3, 8-5-4) on Sunday.

West Conference Northwest Division

DeAnza Force 3, Seattle Sounders 0: Skyler Felt, Jason Romero and Joseph Bolous converted in the 15th, 30th and 42nd minutes as second place DeAnza Force (5-2-1, 9-5-4) overcame the first-place Sounders (6-2-1, 11-3-2) on Sunday in the eight-team division.

Seattle Sounders 6, Santa Cruz Breakers Academy 1: Goals by James Nosack, Mark Matula, Miguel Medina, Kyle Bjornethun, Jalen Markey and Isidiro Prada-Huerta paced the first-place Sounders (6-2-1, 11-3-2). Lynden Gooch was the lone scorer for the last-place Breakers (2-6, 3-14) on Saturday.

West Conference SoCal Division

Real Salt Lake-AZ 2, Real So Cal 1: Benjamin Lopez and Andrew Brody scored the necessary goals in the first half as first-place Real Salt Lake (6-0, 11-2-1) remained unbeaten in the nine-team division. Daniel Mondragon's goal in the 47th minute prevented the shutout for eighth-place Real So Cal (1-4-2, 6-7-2) on Sunday.


McLean Youth 1, South Carolina United Battery 0: Bashir Hooper's score in the 63rd minute helped South Conference Atlantic Division second-place McLean Youth (3-1-1, 6-7-3) to blank South Conference Southeast Division leader South Carolina United Battery on Saturday.


Central Conference, Texas Division

Solar Chelsea 1, Houston Dynamo 0: Jesse Miralrio Toledo's goal in the 43rd minute stood for the victory as the second-place Solar Chelsea (7-4-2, 11-4-3) blanked the sixth place Houston Dynamo (3-4-4, 6-6-4) in the nine-team division on Saturday.

FC Dallas 2, Texas Rush 0: David Robledo and Alonso Gallegos scored a goal in each half as the first-place FC Dallas (11-1-1, 13-1-2) shut out the eighth-place Texas Rush (2-4-3, 3-7-4).

South Conference Atlantic Division

Richmond Kickers 1, Richmond Strikers 0: Zachary Harris converted in the 24th minute, and the defense made it stand for the second-place Richmond Kickers (4-3, 6-12) over the fifth-place Richmond Strikers (4-1-3, 2-12-1) in their eight-team division on Saturday.

West Conference, SoCal Division

Chivas USA 2, Strikers FC 0: Brendan Hines-Ike and Rene Santos scored in the 32nd and 61st minutes to lift first place Chivas (5-1-1, 10-3-1) over the eighth-place Strikers (1-5, 5-8-1) in the nine-team division on Saturday.

Arsenal 1, Real Salt Lake-AZ 0: Edward Arrieta's score in the 44th minute lifted the sixth-place Arsenal (2-1-2, 6-3-4) over fifth-place Real Salt Lake (2-1-3, 4-6-4) on Saturday.

West Conference Northwest Division

San Jose Earthquakes 2, California Development Academy 1: Wyatt McCall scored the game-winner in the 70th minute for the fifth-place Earthquakes (3-2-1, 6-6-2), who led, 1-0, on a score by Jonathan Monterroso. Cody Giddings scored in the 33rd minute for the last place last-place Development Academy (0-7-1, 3-13-2) in the eight-team division on Saturday.


South Carolina United Battery 1, McLean Youth 0: Nestor Jaramillo scored in the 59th minute to lift South Conference Southeast Division front-runner South Carolina United Battery (5-1-6, 11-4-8) over the South Conference Atlantic Division leader McLean Youth (5-0, 7-4-5) on Saturday.