Cezar Onut - Romania

Posted on September 23, 2018 BY Simon Boddison


Cezar Onut, who currently plays for the U17 DA Boys visited Romania during the summer time period.  Besides all the activities, lots of fun and meeting with all his old friends, he attended training sessions with the U16 Boys Romanian National Team (Head Coach Adrian Vasai) for 3-4 days at the National Central of Federation Romanian Fotbal.  After this camp, the U16 Boy's team traveled to the north of the country, visiting the cities of Suceava & Vaslui where he had the opportunity of playing two international friendly games against Republic Moldova National Team.  Many of the players that attended the FRF Camp were currently playing at a very high level in different countries across Europe.  

Cezar Onut

During the summer time period he also had a great opportunity to train for a week with one of the best Youth Academy's from Romania called F.C. Viitorul Constanta.  Gheorghe Hagi (the owner of the club) was very impressed with Cezar's performance and attitude. Cezar then completed his trip and trained with F.C. Petrolul Ploiesti for his final week.  Ploiesti is Cezar's hometown and he had chance to meet up with his old teammates and to train with his first coach at Petrolul Ploiesti called Coach Marius Manolache. 

The club asked Cezar a few questions regarding his trip to Europe:

Q.  What did you enjoy most about your trip to Romania and why?
A. It was an unbelievable opportunity for me to travel to Romania after I left my country five years ago.  I was very excited to see my family, friends and mostly playing for the Romanian National Team because it has always been one my dreams to play for my country.  I have to continually fight, sacrifice and work hard to achieve my dreams.

Q.  What were the top five take-a-ways you took from the trip?

A. For me, soccer is so much more than a ball and playing games, it connects me with players from all of the countries of the world and learning one from another. The soccer provides many emotions and a different feeling every day wherever you live and train to become a great player.

Q.  How did training in Romania help your preparation for the Development Academy season starting in August?

A. I attended many practices where we did a lot of physical tests that helped me to be prepared for the DA team and hope I can help the team out on the field of competition to succeed.

Q.  What is the main difference training in Romania vs. the United States?

A. One of the main differences between Romania vs. United States is that the teams are training 2-4 hours per day and do a lot of fitness.

Q.  What did you learn from your experience that will help your team this coming fall season?

A. I learned to be more aggressive on the field and doing a better job of defending. 

Cezar Onut 1.

 "I am very proud to represent Houston Dynamo | Dash Youth Soccer Club along with playing two games for the Romanian National Team and to continue my development as a player at this awesome club. Every season is a new challenge to me and I am very committed to continually improve my playing performance for the 2018-19 season."  Cezar Onut, U17 Boys DA.






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Jenna Trauffler Road To Recovery

Posted on July 19, 2018 BY Nhan Doan - Sports Reporter


Dash U17’s Jenna Trauffler and the road to recovery......

While the rest of the U-17 Houston Dash Development Academy team travelled to San Diego, California for the DA Showcase, Jenna Trauffler stayed home to continue her rehabilitation.

Last September, Trauffler entered the season with high hopes. After spending more than 10 years at the club from the recreational to the competitive level, she received a call up to the DA team to compete in the inaugural Girls’ DA league season. She considered it a tremendous process in her career, and was eager to be a part of it.

“We just switched to DA from ECNL, so there were a lot of big changes,” Trauffler said. “I was just excited to be playing with the same competition, but at a new level of playing. Everything was kind of progressing a lot more. The competition was getting better and better each year.”

Houston Dash didn’t have the best start as its first victory only came at the ninth game of the season, but Trauffler, a sophomore centerback, enjoyed her life at the new level. She started in every match and was contacted by a Wisconsin recruiter for a possible scholarship. Her eyes were set for the three-game College Showcase tournament in Lakewood Ranch, Florida in December, where she would have a chance to impress in front of more than 300 college coaches.

In a flash, her season and her collegiate recruitment dashed away tragically.

A week after helping the Dash securing their first win of the season, Trauffler started her tenth consecutive match against Solar Soccer Club in Denton, Texas. Midway through the first half, Trauffler rushed out to take on an opposing attacker which should have ended with a routine tackle.

That routine tackle became eccentric when she heard a pop sound coming from her left knee.

“I was playing with this forward from Solar,” Trauffler said. “I tackled her this one time and the ball got away from us. We were both running back and she had turned to face me. I went for another tackle and I planted [the foot] wrong, and my knee collapsed.”

The trainer said she only suffered a sprained ligament and Trauffler was able to complete the match, but she knew something more serious happened to her knee. A week later, an MRI scan confirmed the worst: a torn anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligament. Trauffler was told she would take eight months to a year to fully recover. Her season and her chance to compete in the college showcase were lost at that moment.         

“When the doctor said I had a torn ACL, my mom started crying,” Trauffler said. “I was trying not to cry. When I got home, I just started to cry. I felt like, I’m going to be out for so long.”

Trauffer said it was the first time she had to miss matches because of an injury, but she never expected such a long absence. She used to spend hours travelling to training, practicing and then hanging out with her teammates after school. The injury suddenly gave her plenty of freedom, but the mental pain of not being able to play soccer caused her to fail to find anything fascinating to fill the blank.

“Soccer was what I looked forward to after school every single day,” Trauffler said. “I was able to get all of my energy out and work as hard as I could non-stop. The first week after surgery, I tried to go to the bathroom and my knee couldn’t bend because there was a big cast that was straight and I couldn’t go to the bathroom because I couldn’t sit. This is going to be awful."

“I didn’t have to go to practice. I had so much free time but it was just a lot of finishing homework early and kind of sitting in the bed, watching TV or doing whatever. I think I was more depressed about not playing soccer rather than doing anything new.”

Jenna wasn’t the only Trauffler to suffer a torn ligament as her brother, Ryan, tore his ACL on three occasions. The Trauflers knew what to do to help her recover as fast as possible and she was quickly setup for rehabilitation.

Jenna went to the same therapist that helped Ryan two days after the surgery, where she committed to attend three times a week. A regimen was quickly established. The first month, she did stretching exercises to regain the ligament’s usage. The next five months were spent building the ligament’s strength and getting back the muscle memory. She started to practice with the ball two months ago, and she is hoping to be cleared to return to full practice in time for the preseason. Through the process, her teammates and coaching staff checked up on her often.

“A lot of my teammates came and they bought me stuff and signed a big card,” Trauffler said. “My coach was checking up on me and text me and asked how I was doing all the time.”

Although her family provided her the resources, her brother was the barrier between Jenna and the recovery. Ryan re-injured his ligament minutes after his return. Although Jenna was determined to not let history repeat a sibling later, the bad omen hanged over her head.

“I originally I planted the foot wrong, and that caused me to injure myself,” Trauffler said. “When I ran for the first time, I felt like I could have planted wrong and reinjured myself just by running.”

“I was scared at first because I thought as soon as I started running, my knee was going to fall apart. The first couple of times, it felt really weird. I think two months after I started running, I was fine with it and I wasn’t scared at all.”

Seven months after that day in Denton, Trauffler kicked the ball for the first time. She had juggled with her therapist in rehab sessions, but that was the first time she tried to kick the ball with power. When she planted her injured foot for the first time to perform a volley, Trauffler knew she was ready to be back into action.

 “The first thing I thought was, I’m terrible. My touch is going to be bad,” Trauffler said. “After the first couple of times, it wasn’t that bad."      

Trauffler declared herself ready to be back in action after that session, but her mother and her therapist advised her to take everything slowly. In August, she will be ready to return to full-time practice, just in time for the pre-season period. Trauffler will restart the process as the U-17 DA kicks off the new season in September. As a high school junior, she still has plenty of time to improve her college recruitment. With the injury behind her, Trauffer is focused to return better than ever.

“I’m lucky that with my parents and everyone else supporting me, I was able to go to therapy and have a personal trainer,” Trauffler said. “I am super grateful that my parents paid for that to help me get back. I’m motivated and excited to get back to do what I love.”


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U15 Dash - Development Academy Finish Strong

Posted on July 06, 2018 BY Nhan Doan - Sports Reporter

Houston Dash’s U15 Development Academy finish the season with a fantastic showing at the Summer Showcase.

After two big victories against United Futbol Academy and Cedar Stars Academy, Houston Dash DA team had LA Galaxy San Diego in their sights for their final game of the season.

With home field advantage, Galaxy started fast with Taylor Rzewuski and Ryann Cull scoring in the 16thand 23rdminute leaving Houston trailing by two goals midway through the first half.

With 7 goals in the previous two games, there was no question if Dash would score, it was just a matter of when.  In the 36thminute, Angie Diep unleashed a powerful shot from outside the 18-yard box to cut the deficit. Galaxy took a 2-1 lead at the interval.

Galaxy restored the two-goal advantage courtesy of Gabrielle Prych’s effort two minutes after the break. Houston pushed forward to try to snatch a draw and in the 70thminute, Sydnie Thibodaux and Diep combined through the midfield. Thibodaux then beat two defenders and firmly buried her shot into the back of the net.  Dash pressed hard for a 3rdgoal in the final 10 minutes creating several great opportunities but it finished LA Galaxy 3, Houston Dash 2.

“LA Galaxy were well organized and very deliberate in how they wanted to attack,” Head Coach Andrew Squire said. “It was a completely different style of play to what we faced the previous day, but the girls worked hard to adapt and implement their own on style on the game.  In the second half, we felt a change of formation to 3-5-2 would give us an advantage.  We dominated the final 15 minutes and despite several efforts, we just could not find a way to get the equalizer which I felt we deserved.  Overall, it was a fantastic week and a great way to end the season.  The feedback from the college coaches about how the team has developed over the course of the season is inspiring and I can’t wait to get back on the training field next month to continue the process.  Below is a list of college coaches who watched the Houston Dash U15's this season.  The future looks very bright for this talented group of young ladies!"

Colleges Present:  

Arkansas, Army, Baylor Brooklyn College, Cal State Fullerton, Cal-Poly, Central Arkansas, Charleston College, Clemson University, Coastal Carolina, Colorado State, Cornell Dartmouth, Delaware, Duke University, East Carolina, Eastern Washington, ECU, Fairfield, Florida, Florida Gulf Coast, Florida State University, George Washington, Georgetown, Georgia, Gonzaga, Grand Canyon High Point University, Holy Cross, Illinois, Illinois State, Indiana, Jacksonville State, James Madison, James Madison University, Kansas State, Lafayette University, Leigh, Liberty University, LMU, Louisville, Loyola Marymount, LSU, Marquette, Marshall, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State Milwaukee, Mississippi State, MIT, Navy, NC Charlotte, NC State, New Jersey Institute of Technology, New Mexico, New Mexico State, Northeastern University, Northern Illinois Northwestern, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Oregon, OSU, Oklahoma, Penn State, Pepperdine, Pittsburg, Portland State, Princeton, Providence College, Rice University, Rutgers, Sam Houston State University, Santa Clara, SMU, South Carolina, Southern California, St. Edwards, St. Francis University (Pennsylvania), St. John's University, St. John’s, TCU, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Texas AM Corpus Christi, Texas State, Texas Tech, Towson, Maryland, Troy University, Tulsa, TX State, TX Tech, University of Connecticut, University of Denver, University of Houston, University of Massachusetts, University of Pennsylvania, University of Richmond, University of Southern California, University of Iowa, University of Miami, University of Michigan, UAB, UCLA, UNC Asheville, University of California – Berkley, University of Central Arkansas, University of Cincinnati, University of Connecticut, University of Dayton, University of Delaware, University of Evansville, University of Illinois, University of Illinois-Chicago, University of Indiana, University of Iowa, University of Kentucky, University of Louisville, University of Maryland, University of Miami, University of Richmond, University of San Francisco, University of Tennessee, University of Texas, University of Texas El Paso, University of Utah, University of Virginia, University of Washington, Utah State, UTSA, Vermont, Villanova, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Tech, Washington State, Washington University, Washington University, St. Louis, Wesleyan, West Virginia, William and Mary, Wisconsin

To receive more updates about the Dash and the Dynamo Youth, follow them at @DynamoDashYouth on Twitter and @dynamodashyouth on Instagram.

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US Soccer Development Academy Spring Showcase 2018

Posted on April 17, 2018 BY Simon Boddison

The Houston Dash attended the US Soccer Development Academy Spring Showcase this past weekend providing their U14-U17 players an opportunity to play in front of hundreds of college coaches and US National Team scouts.  The 5-day event in Greensboro, North Carolina featured the nation’s top youth clubs, teams and players. 

To read the the full release from the US Soccer Development Academy - "Spring Showcase Provides Elite Scouting Opportunity" click here.

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Dynamo Youth 04 - France Tour 2018

Posted on April 06, 2018 BY Simon Boddison

France 2018

The Dynamo 04 Development Academy recently returned from a tour in France which saw them compete in the TOURNOI SANS FRONTIERE (25th Edition). They were the first USA team to attend the prestigious event.

Coaching Staff: Dave Dengerink, Development Academy Director; Brian Cvilikas, Head Team Coach.

Team Players: Abel Piedra, Cesar Cordova, Jonah Clayton, Dean Wright, Joey Hlavac, Andrew Hollenbach, Finn Fenske, Joel Rodriguez, Ross Neves, Richard Monge, Cody Tice, Mikel Gonzalez, Felipe Alvarado, Antonio Rubio, Diego Diaz & Luis Lugo.

“This was an unbelievable opportunity for our players and staff to travel internationally and play in the Tournoi Sans Frontiere. It provided international competition against some of the top clubs in the world and at the highest levels in our age group. The football challenged and elevated our levels of play. The cultural experience this trip provided to our players was invaluable. It will open their perspective as they pursue and achieve different educational and professional goals. Also, the crepes were simply delicious!"  Brian Cvilikas, Head Coach.

 March 26 - Day 1

We landed at the airport at 8:15am in Paris, France. We first went to Champs Elysees Avenue including some shops like Adidas, PSG and Abercrombie. Then we went to see the Arc de Triomphe. When we got to the hotel we prepared for practice. We walked to the training fields that were on site. We trained on the same field as the Togo National team, they were also staying at our hotel. When we were finished we cleaned up and ate a delicious dinner in the hotel restaurant.

Finn Fenske #1 and Diego Diaz #43

France 20182

“Traveling to France was a good experience because it thought a lot to me as a player and as an individual. It was my first time going to France, so I learned a lot of things. When we were in the games, I learned to play under pressure.”  Diego Diaz #43

France 2018(3)

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Alvarado & Rodriguez win CONCACAF U20 Championship

Posted on February 13, 2018 BY Simon Boddison

Screen Shot 2018-02-12 at 10.39.05 PM.png

Former Houston Dash (Texas Rush) players Emily Alvarado (Texas Christian University) and Kimberly Rodriguez (Oklahoma State University) recently came away with a victory vs. U20 USA WNT in the title game of the 2018 CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship in penalty kicks by a 4-2 scoreline in Couva, Trinidad & Tobago (Jan 28).  It was the third meeting between the USA and Mexico in the championship game of this tournament and the first time Mexico has come out on top.


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Omar Morales - Girls Development Academy Staff

Posted on January 26, 2018 BY Simon Boddison


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