The Development Academy has named Dillon Powers and Ruben Luna as players of the year.Dillon Powers and Ruben Luna have been named the Development Academy players of the year.
Powers, who recently got a call-up for the United States U20 national team, plays central midfield for Andromeda SC in Texas and will be attending Notre Dame this fall. There he will join up with fellow U20 teammate Aaron Maund in the hopes of winning a national title.
Powers is not new to winning accolades. Last year he was named an All-America selection by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America and earlier this summer was named Gatorade National Player of the Year. Dillon was also an integral part of the U18 Gold Medal squad at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival.
"[Dillon’s] range of passing and his pass selection is spot on. He can get out of tight spaces and he's got a very powerful shot; he's just on a different level. His soccer IQ is up there along with his natural ability. Technically, tactically, physically and mentally, he's got the edge," said Gary Williamson, North Texas State Soccer Olympic Development Program director of coaching.
Powers is expected to go with the U.S. U20 team to Argentina in late July for a warm-up tournament to precede the U20 World Cup in Egypt.
Ruben Luna, who plays striker for FC Dallas U15/16 team, led all Development Academy goal-scorers with an amazing strike rate of 37 goals in 28 games, which comes out to a goal every 68 minutes if you don’t feel like busting out a calculator.
Ruben starred for North Mesquite High School in Texas before joining the FC Dallas Juniors soccer program. FC Dallas forbids it’s U-18 and U-16 participants to play for high school teams. Even as a freshman in high school Luna had a knack for finding the back of the net, tallying 28 goals and 16 assists in his first year.
Luna’s high school coach Morris Thompson says, "He can control the ball. Once he controls the ball, he can stop and start, and he's at full speed in two steps. And he's faster than anybody on the field most of the time."
Born in Mexico, Luna moved to the U.S. when he was 2 years old. U.S. soccer fans will surely hope to see Luna follow in the footsteps of Jose Francisco Torres by turning down Mexico to play for the U.S.
Adam Hastings covers youth soccer for Goal.com
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