CARSON, Calif.— It was quite a week for Galaxy Academy midfielder Drew Murphy. Not only did the Palos Verdes-native captain the Galaxy U-18’s to a convincing 3-1 win over Chivas USA on Sunday, scoring the game-winner in the process, but he also came on as a late second half substitute in LA’s convincing 6-0 win over Vancouver in MLS Reserve League play on Friday, a win that clinched a West Division title for the club.
“I’m always stoked to get the call up to play [with the reserves] and if I get minutes that’s even better,” Murphy said. “It was a pretty good weekend all around.”
One of the longest tenured players in the Academy, having joined the club ahead of the 2009/10 Development Academy season, Murphy has played in more SuperClasiquito than most. As a result, it was all that much more rewarding to score the winner late in the first half of Sunday’s game, heading in a Raul Mendiola freekick. That goal gave LA a 2-1 halftime lead, an advantage that they maintained until Jack McBean killed off the game with a late insurance goal.
But despite the goal, which was his first of the season, Murphy was most pleased that his team was able to come away from the match with the full three points and extend their winning streak to three games.
“It’s always good to score but the most important thing was that the team won,” he said. “If I can contribute to that in any way, it’s always a good feeling.”
Now in his fourth season of play with the Galaxy Academy, Murphy continues to impress. He has trained with the first team on a number of occasions and made one Reserve League appearance last season while also being included in many of their gameday squads. Those experiences have helped make the 17-year-old not only a better player, but a better leader as well. And that is something that will only help him down the line.
“There are so many things that I’ve improved on [playing with the Academy and the Reserves],” added the UC Santa Barbara-bound Murphy. “The level of play gives you an idea to where you need to be and the things that you need to do right. At the end of the day, it’s always an honor to work hard and get called up. Once you’re there, the guys are always talking to you and helping you out in every which way. It’s just a learning experience that you can take a lot out of.”