Justin Morrow and his Chicago Fire squad fell to the Ventura County Fusion, 2-1, in the 2009 USL Premier Development League title game on Saturday.

Fighting Irish Summer Recap

Aug. 10, 2009

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Despite it being the `offseason’ several members of the Notre Dame men’s soccer team enjoyed an eventful summer on the pitch either with their club teams or in training. In many instances, it was a successful summer for the Irish student-athletes.

Justin Morrow (Sr./M/Cleveland, Ohio) and his Chicago Fire squad fell to the Ventura County Fusion, 2-1, in the 2009 USL Premier Development League title game on Saturday, Aug. 8. The match took place in Ventura, Calif. The game will be televised on Tuesday, Aug 11th on The Fox Soccer Channel at 7:30 p.m. (ET).

Michael Rose (So./M/F/Severna Park, Md.) won the United States Youth Soccer Association (USYSA) U-19 national championship with his home state Baltimore Casa Mia Bays club team. It marked the third national title for Rose and the Bays in the past four years. He also helped the Bays to the national championship in 2006 and 2008. Sean McGrath (So./D/Indianapolis, Ind.) and his Indy Burn team made it to the national finals but they were eliminated by two late goals from Rose’s squad.

Rose also played for DC United in the Super 20s tournament where he reached the semifinals. The Chicago Fire, which featured Notre Dame’s Brendan King (So./M/Naperville, Ill.), Greg Klazura (Jr./D/M/Rockford, Ill.), Aaron Maund (So./D/Dorchester, Mass.) and Josh Thiermann (Jr./M/Stoughton, Wis.) also were eliminated in the semifinals.

The local Professional Development League (PDL) squad, the Indiana Invaders, saw Andrew Quinn (Sr./GK/Silver Spring, Md.) make his comeback after being out eights months with shoulder surgery. He was joined by Andrew Luttrell (Jr./F/M/Granger, Ind.), Steven Perry (Jr./F/Edmond, Okla.), Bilal Duckett (Jr./D/Peachtree City, Ga.) and Adam Mena (So./M/Holland, Mich.). Other players in the PDL were John Schaefer (Sr./D/Troy, Mich.) playing for the Michigan Bucks, and Chris Sutton (So./M/D/Apple Valley, Minn.) for the Rochester Thunder out of Minnesota.

Will Walsh (So./GK/Chester Twp., N.J.) travelled to Italy with his club team, the NJ/NY Roughnecks, to compete in an international tournament. They played several Italian Serie A youth teams and made it to the final where they lost to the Italian U-20s.

Maund and Dillon Powers (Fr./M/Plano, Texas) spent time playing with the United States U-20 National Team in Egypt. Powers also travelled with the U-20 squad to Argentina, yet Maund was unable due to summer school commitments.

Michael Thomas (Sr./M/Olathe, Kan.) and Bright Dike (Sr./F/Edmond, Okla.) trekked over to Norway to practice with their former teammate Joseph Lapira (`07) and his Nybergsund team. Thomas also spent two weeks training with his former Irish teammate Matt Besler (`09) and the Kansas City Wizards of Major League Soccer (MLS).

A few other Fighting Irish players spent time training with MLS squads. Dave Donohue (Sr./M/Reading, Mass.) spent a week with the New England Revolution, while Philip Tuttle (Sr./GK/Hooksett, N.H.) also had a couple practice sessions with the Revolution. Tamba Samba (Sr./F/Indianapolis, Ind.) enjoyed practice time with the Seattle Sounders during a visit to the Pacific Northwest.