After enduring a year of heartbreak and failure for both club and country, Jaime Penedo finally got over the hump and ended the 2014 campaign with a championship.
Brought in as a savior for the LA Galaxy’s goalkeeping situation midway through the 2013 campaign, Penedo suffered a pair of setbacks in successive fashion as Panama failed to qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and a month later LA were bounced from the postseason in the opening round.
Such disappointments stuck in the craw of the happy-go-lucky Panamanian goalkeeper heading into the 2014 season and he responded with aplomb.
During the regular season, Penedo enjoyed a 1.14 goals against average—.01 behind Goalkeeper of the Year Bill Hamid—while also making eight shutouts as he carried LA to the league’s second best record. In the playoffs, he shook off any claims that he could not come up in big games with stellar performances in LA’s series against Real Salt Lake and Seattle Sounders FC, the former which included a six save showing in the first leg.
In the MLS Cup final against New England, Penedo put forth yet another strong showing with six saves against the Revs to seal his first professional title since winning a title in Guatemala with Municipal. After years of frustration with Panama and his club teams, to win a title after such a trying season proved to be a “dream come true” for Penedo.
"It is a great blessing and a joy," Penedo told reporters after winning the title. “I dedicate this to dear God, my faith, my family, and my country.”
How would you rate Penedo's 2014? Read my review of the Galaxy goalkeepers for LAGalaxy.com and vote below.
The Virginia Cavaliers defeated the UCLA Bruins 4-2 in penalty shootout at WakeMed Soccer Park after a scoreless tie in the 2014 College Cup Final.
The Cavaliers opted for a defensive posture that negated the Bruins' high-power attack for 120 minutes until the match went to penalty kicks. Riggs Lennon scored the title-winning penalty kick for Virginia, which made four of five penalty kicks while the Bruins saw two of their attempts ping off the cross bar.
The title is the Cavaliers' seventh and their second in five years.
The UCLA Bruins and their heavy LA Galaxy Academy contingent will play in the NCAA College Cup final on Sunday against Virginia (9 a.m. PT on ESPNU) at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina.
UCLA reached the championship game after dispatching the Providence Friars with a 3-2 victory in double overtime thanks to a golden goal from defender Chase Gasper. The Bruins’ Larry Nadjock and Providence striker Mac Steeves traded goals during regulation.
Galaxy Academy graduate Brian IIoski led the LA contingent with 80 minutes played in the victory while Christian Chavez (47 minutes played), Grady Howe (76 minutes played), and Willie Raygoza (14 minutes played) each made appearances.
They'll face Virginia, who rose to soccer prominence under the leadership of Bruce Arena, who led the Cavaliers to five titles in 18 years as the team's head coach. The Cavaliers reached the final by defeating the University of Maryland-Baltimore County 1-0 earlier on Friday.
The LA Galaxy passed on making any selections in stage one of the 2014 MLS Re-Entry Draft.
Only three players were selected in the first process as former Sporting KC goalkeepers Eric Kronberg and Andy Gruenebaum were selected by Montreal Impact and San Jose Earthquakes respectively while former Real Salt Lake forward Robbie Findley was taken by Toronto FC.
Teams will now have a chance to regonotiate with their players made available for the Re-Entry Draft process before stage two on Dec. 18
CARSON, Calif. -- LA Galaxy Homegrown Player Bradford Jamieson IV was named by U.S. Under-20 head coach Tab Ramos for the team's upcoming training camp in Honduras from Dec. 15 to Dec. 22.
Jamieson, who took part in the team's recent fitness training camp earlier this month, returns to the fold in the U.S. U-20's final training camp of the year. During the training camp, the U.S. will play a pair of matches against Honduras on Dec. 18 and Dec. 21 at Morazan Stadium in San Pedro Sula.
The complete roster is below.
CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy Homegrown Player Jack McBean is heading to Europe for the rest of the month on a pair of training stints, a source close to the situation told LA Galaxy Insider.
The 19-year-old forward is currently training with Championship side Charlton Athletic and will train there for the next eight days until joining up with Scottish club Hibernian for another 10 day training period. A club spokesman confirmed McBean’s training stint.
McBean, who trained in England last year with Blackburn Rovers and Wolves, endured a trying year with Galaxy II in 2014 as he scored five goals in 26 appearances.
CARSON, Calif. -- The LA Galaxy declined options on four players on Thursday and all four players will be available for the two stages of the MLS Re-Entry Draft Process on Dec. 12 and Dec. 18.
LA declined options on Galaxy II stalwarts Rafael Garcia, Chandler Hoffman, Bryan Perk as well as veteran outside back James Riley. The four players join center back Kyle Venter who was waived by the team on Wednesday.
Garcia made 23 appearances as the captain of Los Dos in 2014 while also making 11 appearances for the first team in his three years with the club. In two seasons with the Galaxy, Hoffman made eight appearances -- all of them in 2014 -- for the Galaxy while tallying 13 goals for the team's USL PRO affiliate. Perk, who was dealt with concussion issues for much of the season, appeared in five games for the Galaxy. Lastly, Riley played in just four games after suffering an meniscus injury in March.
Fresh off winning his second MLS Cup championship, Robbie Rogers is in the middle of a book tour for his autobiography "Coming Out to Play."
In an interview with the Huffington Post, Rogers talks about his new book and about his experiences with the Galaxy. In particular, Rogers discusses about the importance of retired LA Galaxy star Landon Donovan to his career and to his career since coming out.
Rogers' tour returns to Southern California on Dec. 13 at CostCo in Los Angeles and Book Soup in West Hollywood on Dec. 15.