Photo May 07, 7 07 14 PM

Sixteen-Year-Old Kobi Thomas Notches First Professional Goal

Philadelphia Union II defeated Inter Miami CF II 1-2 at DRV PNK Stadium on Saturday. The home side dominated possession (60-40), but a brace from Nelson Pierre was the difference for the visitors, who earned their first road win of the MLS NEXT Pro season and moved their unbeaten streak to three with the result.

Inter Miami CF II opened the match with a youthful starting XI featuring Andre Zuluaga in net; Harvey Neville, Abel Caputo, Ethan Hardin, and Tyler Bagley on the backline; Lawson Sunderland, Kobi Thomas, and Benjamin Cremaschi, in the midfield; and Romeo Beckham, Shanyder Borgelin and Miles Perkovich in the attack.

“I am proud of the team tonight, the competitiveness of all the players," said Head Coach Darren Powell. "We had a young group out there tonight. We had 12 Academy players within the roster tonight which is what we want to do as a club and they didn’t play like their age. They worked hard and they competed. Kobi [Thomas] scored a goal in his debut, Benja [Cremaschi] had a strong match, he was competing until the very end, Miles [Perkovich] is just 15-years-old and he did everything we asked of him tonight. They all did."

Inter Miami CF II opened the scoring on Saturday in the 10th minute of play. Romeo Beckham played a leading ball down the right sideline to Benjamin Cremaschio who whipped the ball in the six-yard-box. Philadelphia Union Goalkeeper, Brooks Thompson got a hand on the cross, but the rebound fell to sixteen-year-old Thomas whose one-time left-footed strike found the back of the net.

The visitors were able to get on the scoresheet in first half stoppage time as Philadelphia Union II’s Pierre cut inside and curled a right-footed strike past Zuluaga to the far post just before the halftime whistle. Stefan Stojanovic earned the assist on the play. The Union’s momentum continued into the second half as they gained their first lead of the match shortly after the halftime intermission with a second finish from Pierre, this one from close range.

Inter Miami CF II rebounded quickly and saw back-to-back goal-scoring opportunities followed by a trio of offensive corner kicks in quick succession. Inter Miami CF II looked to build on the momentum by adding some fresh legs with Logan Batiste entering the match for Bagley in the 70th minute and Braxton Najib and Dairon Reyes replacing Thomas and Hardin shortly after. Despite leading in both possession and shots on goal (8-3), the home side could not find the equalizer.

Saturday’s meeting was the second of three this season for Inter Miami CF II and the Philadelphia Union II. The two sides will go head-to-head once more this season in August.

Inter Miami CF II is back on the road for a two-game road stretch beginning on May 14 when they face Rochester New York FC at 6 p.m. ET.