Elo Ozumba's hat trick moves Dynamo U-18s closer to playoff berth

Dynamo U-18s win, Dynamo U-16s lose last weekend vs. Real Colorado

The Houston Dynamo Academy, presented by Statoil, hosted Real Colorado last weekend at the Houston Amateur Sports Park. The Dynamo split the weekend series with Real Colorado, with the Dynamo U-18s earning a 3-2 win and the Dynamo U-16s falling 2-1 to snap their 13-game unbeaten streak.

With five players taking the SATs that morning, Dynamo director of youth development James Clarkson promoted striker Elo Ozumba from the U-16 squad to the U-18 squad for last weekend's match. Ozumba entered the match with 17 games in 25 matches, tied for second best in the country.

The promotion had little affect on Ozumba, as the Nigerian-American striker scored three first-half goals to lead his team to a 3-2 victory. His first goal came in the 19th minute, when Jose Rodriguez played Ozumba through behind a pair of Colorado defenders. Ozumba ran on to the ball and one-timed it over the left shoulder of the Colorado goalkeeper.

The Dynamo doubled their lead in the 30th minute. Left back Alex Ochoa and winger Irvin Ramirez played a give-and-go sequence that sent Ochoa free into the corner. The future West Virginia Mountaineer curled in a perfect ball to the six-yard box and Ozumba headed it into the net for his second goal of the day. Ozumba completed his hat trick minutes later when he picked up a loose ball near midfield. The 6-foot-2 striker raced down the field past two defenders and hammered a shot into the far post. Real Colorado scored two goals in the second half, but it was not enough as the Dynamo held on to improve their record to 14-4-7.

The Dynamo U-16s fell 2-1 to Real Colorado, their first loss since December 15. Christian Lucatero put the Dynamo ahead in the first half with his 11th goal of the season. Real Colorado pulled one back right before halftime and scored the game-winner in the 56th minute. The Dynamo U-16s are now 17-4-4 and in third place in their division.

Both teams will conclude their three-game homestand when they take on Colorado Rush Saturday afternoon at the Houston Amateur Sports Park. The U-18s will kick off at 2 p.m. with the U-16s to follow at 4:30 p.m.

PLAYOFF UPDATE

Following the loss, the Dynamo U-16s remain tied for first place in the division on points (55) but are in third place in the division on points per game (2.20). The team remains locked into one of the top three spots in the divison and an automatic playoff berth. To win the Frontier Division, Eddie Robinson's side will have to win their remaining games - home vs. Colorado Rush; away vs. FC Dallas - and have other results fall their way. The Dynamo have played three more games than FC Dallas and two more games than Solar Chelsea, the two teams ahead of them in the division.

The Dynamo U-18s enter this coming weekend with a chance to clinch a playoff berth. The team is currently first in the division on points (49) but fourth on points per game (1.96). The three teams ahead of the Dynamo have played at least two fewer games, with FC Dallas having played three fewer games. The Dynamo are currently third in the overall Wild Card race, with the top 13 Wild Card teams earning playoffs berths.

U-18: Houston Dynamo (14-4-7) vs Real Colorado (12-9-3)
April 28, 2013 -- Houston Amateur Sports Park
USSF Development Academy League

Scoring Summary:
HOU -- Elo Ozumba 19
HOU -- Elo Ozumba 30
HOU -- Elo Ozumba 33
REAL -- Graham Smith 53 
REAL-- Nick DePuy 69

U-16: Houston Dynamo (17-4-4) vs Real Colorado (12-7-3)
April 28, 2013 -- Houston Amateur Sports Park
USSF Development Academy League

Scoring Summary:
HOU -- Christian Lucatero 18
REAL -- Caesar Jones 35 
REAL-- Samuel Saenz 56

All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial.