Lezama Starlets Shine With Euskadi U18 And U16 Teams In Regional Tournament
This weekend was an important time for the Euskadi U18 and U16 teams who were looking to reach the final round of the Regional Selection Championships. To advance the two squads had to go through Valencia on Friday in what proved to be difficult games. As is usually the case, several starlets from Lezama were called up to compete with the Basque youth teams.
Nico Serrano, Beñat Gerenabarrena, and Alejandro Rego all started for the Euskadi U16 team for manager Egoitz Mendizabal. Hugo Rincón was on the bench. The Basques found themselves down 3-0 late in the game, but Serrano was able to score a beautiful goal with two defenders wrapped around him in the box. The defeat meant that they would not advance past Valencia.
Later on Friday Adrian Trespalacios, Beñat Prados, and Ruben Azcona all started against Valencia on Friday for manager Jonathan Ledesma. Kepa Uriarte and Nico Williams were both on the bench. It was Williams’ first time with the U18 team, having just recently been promoted from the U16 team for these matches.
The Euskadi U18s went into halftime tied 1-1 with a goal from Real Sociedad’s Ander Barrenetxea and would would go down a goal quickly after the break. Lezama’s Kepa Uriarte was then brought on for Prados in the 75th minute and managed to equalize with a late header. The game ended in a 2-2 draw which wasn’t enough to advance either.
Despite not making it to the finals, both teams would be back in action again on Saturday against Cantabria. The Euskadi U16 would be in action first with Nico Serrano, Alejandro Rego, and Hugo Rincón all in the starting lineup. Once again they fell behind 3-0 but were able to get a late goal from an Athletic player, this time substitute Beñat Gerenabarrena.
For the Euskadi U18 team, Ruben Azcona and Kepa Uriarte were both in the starting lineup. Adrian Trespalacios, Beñat Prados, and Nico Williams were all on the bench. Cantabria scored first, but Eibar’s Gaizka Argente was able to equalize before the final whistle was blown. The match ended in a 1-1 draw.
Euskadi may not have been able to make the final round of the tournament, but all of the players gained valuable experience. Several Lezama starlets got the chance to play heavy minutes with Beñat Prados, Alejandro Rego, and Nico Serrano standing out as some of the best players in the entire tournament. Now the Katxorros will return to their clubs, however Juvenil A and Juvenil B teams did not have any games scheduled this weekend due to the Euskadi competing in this tournament.