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Soccer notebook: Fuego looks to take control of PDL division in Utah

The FC Rats, a local co-ed soccer club made up of former and current Fresno City College players, earned a trip to the U.S. finals of the Redbull Neymar Jr’s Five Tournament in the Fresno qualifier on April 16, 2016.
The FC Rats, a local co-ed soccer club made up of former and current Fresno City College players, earned a trip to the U.S. finals of the Redbull Neymar Jr’s Five Tournament in the Fresno qualifier on April 16, 2016.

The Fresno Fuego (4-2-0) will take its four-match winning streak to Provo, Utah, for two matches against the BYU Cougars on Thursday and Saturday.

The first match offers the Fuego a chance to take control of the Premier Development League’s Central Pacific Division. Fresno has 11 points, tied with the Las Vegas Mobsters (3-3-2) to lead the division, though the Fuego has played two less matches than the Mobsters.

The Fuego – No. 3 in the PDL’s Western Conference power rankings released Tuesday – is led by breakout forward Christian Chaney, who has nine goals, including the lone score in Fresno’s 1-0 win against the Southern California Seahorses last weekend.

The Cougars (2-2-3) are 1-1-2 at home and coming off a 1-1 draw against Las Vegas on June 2 and are still searching for their first win in nearly three weeks.

Both matches are scheduled to kick off at 6 p.m. An online stream is available at www.youtube.com/mensbyusoccer.

Fresno Freeze – The Freeze (4-0-0) will play the first of three straight road matches Sunday against Primero de Mayo (0-4-1) at Capital Christian High School in Sacramento. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:45 p.m.

Fresno is on a tear to start the WPSL season, outscoring opponents 13-3.

Neymar tournament – The FC Rats, a local soccer club made up of former and current Fresno City College players, are headed to Miami to compete in the U.S. finals of Neymar Jr’s Five Tournament.

The members of the coed club are: Jonathan Navarro (Bullard High), Madison Messier (Redwood High), Kalea Ashley (Bullard), Andres Rios (Chowchilla), Jose Ramirez (Buhach Colony-Atwater), Servando Aguilar (Chowchilla) and Sergio Segura (Sanger).

The Fresno-based team took second in the Fresno qualifier of Redbull Neymar Jr’s Five Tournament in April, losing in the final to the Taft College Broders. Both teams earned trips to Miami.

There are 16 teams competing in the round-robin style tournament broken into four brackets of four teams each. Each team is guaranteed three games, with the top two from each group advancing to the quarterfinals.

The teams will arrive in Miami early Thursday morning and will have almost two whole days to be tourists before Saturday’s tournament.

“It’s starting to feel real,” said Navarro, the captain who will play at Academy of Art University in the fall. “We feel super blessed to have this opportunity. ... We want to go out and compete for the city of Fresno in a positive way and show what Fresno is made out of.”

Angel Moreno: 559-441-6401, @anhelllll

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