The San Antonio FC Academy Coaching Staff led by Nick Evans (center) was named as the USSF Development Academy's Central Conference Coaching Staff of the Year in the DA's awards announced on Monday. | Photo courtesy Darren Abate / San Antonio FC
CHICAGO – The U.S. Soccer Development Academy announced its awards for the 2018-19 season on Monday, honoring numerous players that have also competed this season in both the USL Championship and USL League One.
Leading the honorees was the coaching staff of the San Antonio FC Pro Academy, which was named the Central Conference’s Coaching Staff of the Year. Led by Academy Director Nick Evans, SAFC Pro Academy has helped promote multiple players to the club’s USL Championship side in the past two seasons, with Leo Torres earlier this year becoming the Championship’s youngest professional signing aged 15 years, 23 days.
Evans was joined in being honored by colleagues Tim Chestney, Jeremiah Narvaez, Ryan Roushandel and Juan Lamadrid.
“I am truly thrilled and extremely thankful for the U.S. Soccer Development Academy’s recognition of our SAFC Pro Academy staff this season,” said Evans. “It is a pleasure to share our development process with exceptional people and professionals. We are very appreciative of internal support from our organization along with Spurs Sports & Entertainment’s commitment to the youth in San Antonio.”
LA Galaxy II defender Kobe Hernandez-Foster was named the Most Valuable Player in the USSF Development Academy's Western Conference on Monday. | Photo courtesy LA Galaxy II
Leading the players honored in the annual awards was the LA Galaxy II’s Kobe Hernandez-Foster, who was named the Western Conference’s Player of the Year. A United States U-17 international, Hernandez-Foster made his first start for Los Dos this season in addition to his stellar play on the back line for the Galaxy Academy.
North Texas SC's Johan Gomez was named the Most Valuable Player of the USSF Development Academy's Central Conference on Monday. | Photo courtesy North Texas SC
He was joined by North Texas SC’s Johan Gomez, who has made six appearances, three starts and has recorded his first goal in the professional ranks in the club’s inaugural season in USL League One. Gomez was joined in being honored by fellow North Texas SC player Tanner Tessman, who was awarded the Golden Ball at the recent USSF Development Academy Playoffs in the Boys U18/19 Division. Tessman has made 12 appearances this season for North Texas, recording one goal and nine key passes.
Saint Louis FC goalkeeper Patrick Schulte was selected to the USSF Development Academy's Central Conference's Best XI having previously made his senior debut for the club earlier this season. | Photo courtesy Matt Bird / St. Louligans
Overall, 16 players on USL Championship and USL League One rosters this season were honored in the Conference Best XIs, including Saint Louis FC goalkeeper Patrick Schulte, who memorably played a decisive role in the club’s penalty shootout victory against USL League Two’s Des Moines Menace in the Second Round of the 2019 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
2019 USSF Development Academy Conference Best XI
Goalkeeper: Andre Zuluaga (Kendall SC)
Defenders: Adam Armour (North Carolina FC Youth), Tayvon Gray (New York City FC), Dante Huckaby (Bethlehem Steel FC), Riley Thomas (United Futbol Academy)
Midfielders: Elio Firmino (New England Revolution), Justin Haak (New York City FC), Bryang Kayo (Loudoun United FC)
Forwards: Kevin Paredes (D.C. United), Marlon Tabora Ponce (Bethesda SC), Evan Southern (Oakwood Soccer Club)
Goalkeeper: Patrick Schulte (Saint Louis FC)
Defenders: Jonathan Gomez (FC Dallas), Antino Lopez (Shattuck-St. Mary's), David Mendoza (Chicago Fire), Jonathan Tomkinson (Solar Soccer Club)
Midfielders: Aidan Morris (Crew SC Academy), Tanner Tessmann (North Texas SC), Nikiphoros Vlastos (Saint Louis FC)
Forwards: Johan Gomez (North Texas SC), Marek Gonda (Sockers FC), Jason Shokalook (Internationals)
Goalkeeper: Sam Fowler (Tacoma Defiance)
Defenders: Jacob Akanyirige (Reno 1868 FC), Mauricio Cuevas (LA Galaxy II), Kobe Hernandez-Foster (LA Galaxy II), Blake Malone (Tacoma Defiance)
Midfielders: Cameron Fisher (Barca Academy), Jordan Pena (Real Monarchs SLC), Louis Rogers (De Anza Force)
Forwards: Jorge Hernandez (LA Galaxy II), Matt Hoppe (Barca Academy), Ray Serrano Lopez (Tacoma Defiance)