South Bay Force/Pateadores in U-17/18 U.S. Soccer Academy national final today on ESPNU, Galaxy play in final Saturday

The game between Pateadores and FC Dallas kicks off at 10 a.m. on ESPNU.

Despite the team using the name of Orange County’s Pateadores youth team, South Bay Force President Greg Yorke said 12 of the 14 players on the roster are from the Force.

South Bay players on the roster include Kevin Alva (Banning), Max Baumann (Mira Costa), Pedro Lugo (Carson), Graeme Mathers (South Torrance), Jack McCracken (Mira Costa), Jefrey Payeras (Animo), Jose Rivera (Torrance), Daniel Theobold (Animo), Jose Villareal (Leuzinger), Yorke said.

The team is coached by former UCLA men’s coach and El Segundo resident Todd Saldaa, who is Technical Director for the Force.

The team made an improbable run to reach the final, according to the club’s newsletter.

The team was seeded 31st out of 32 teams who made the playoffs.

“The team lost 16 points midway through the season when two players were declared ineligible after playing for their junior college — an unintentional error due to a rule change this year,” according to the team’s newsletter.

*The Galaxy U-15/U-16 youth team did what the senior squad could not accomplish – beat the Seattle Sounders this week to qualify for the final Saturday night.

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About Nick Green

South Bay-based Los Angeles News Group soccer columnist and blogger Nick Green writes at the 100 Percent Soccer blog at and craft beer at the Beer Goggles blog at Cheers!