Vancouver Sun

White­caps put 15-year-old Colyn in game, and he de­liv­ers

Res­i­dency player helps set up a goal in 4-0 win over Ja­panese side in Hawaii

- J.J. ADAMS jadams@post­media.com Sports · College Sports · Soccer · Vancouver Whitecaps · Hawaii · Fun (band) · National Collegiate Athletic Association · California State University · Deportivo Saprissa · Alphonso Davies · Carl Robinson · Vancouver · Portugal · Under Armour Inc. · Kei Kamara · Club Dallas · California State University, Dominguez Hills · Consadole Sapporo · Sapporo · Australian National University · Brek Shea · Iwaki FC

It was rookie night in Hawaii and, as is tra­di­tion, all the White­caps new­bies were forced to get up and sing a song.

Si­mon Colyn’s choice of Row, Row, Row Your Boat was a bit ironic, since it wouldn’t have been that long ago he would have sung it for fun. The res­i­dency team for­ward/ mid­fielder is all of 15 years old.

For con­text, start­ing striker Kei Ka­mara was al­ready play­ing NCAA soc­cer with the Cal State Toros (Dominguez Hills) by the time Colyn ar­rived on this world. While Colyn was learn­ing to run, Ken­dall Was­ton was al­ready run­ning with the big boys at Costa Ri­can club Saprissa.

But on Tues­day, the youngest player with the team held his own with his elder states­men.

Com­ing on in the 78th minute in place of Myer Be­van in their pre­sea­son opener against J1 League side Hokkaido Con­sadole Sap­poro, the Lan­g­ley na­tive’s im­pact was im­me­di­ately felt. He brought a youth­ful en­ergy part­ner­ing up front with Bernie Ibini, and played a nice give-and-go with 17-year-old Alphonso Davies to set up Ibini for an in­jury-time goal in the 4-0 vic­tory.

“I think he de­served his chance,” coach Carl Robin­son said of Colyn, one of four res­i­dency play­ers on the trip along with Jef­fer­son Alade, Thomas Hasal and Jake Ruby.

“It was based on what he’s done around the place. Very re­spect­ful. But he’s des­per­ate to play. And I want play­ers who are des­per­ate to play for this foot­ball club. I asked him if he wanted to play, and he said ‘Yes, please.’

“He brought a great en­ergy to the game, he set up Bernie with the goal, and that’s what I want from my young play­ers.”

Robin­son fielded two dif­fer­ent sides in each half of Tues­day’s game, part of the eval­u­a­tion process that will con­tinue when the Caps play their open­ing game of the in­au­gu­ral Pa­cific Rim Cup to­day.

Van­cou­ver takes on another Ja­panese side in Iwaki FC at 7 p.m. PT (stream­ing live on white­capsfc.com) be­fore fac­ing ei­ther the Colum­bus Crew or Hokkaido in the cham­pi­onship or third-place match on Satur­day.

While the fu­ture was on dis­play Tues­day in Colyn, so were the past and present.

Cen­tre back Tim Parker headed home two free-kick balls to show the Caps still haven’t for­got­ten their long­time set-piece scor­ing touch. And Ka­mara showed he’s still a scor­ing threat, fin­ish­ing off a deft play with Brek Shea and nearly con­vert­ing two other chances.

While Hokkaido plays in the top tier of Ja­panese soc­cer, Iwaki re­sides five lev­els be­low — though the team has part­nered with Un­der Ar­mour with a plan to rise to the J1 level within 10 years. Some more res­i­dency or fringe play­ers might see ac­tion against the Fukushimab­ased side.

“I’ll be try­ing dif­fer­ent com­bi­na­tions in pre-sea­son,” he said. “I’ve got in my mind an idea of what I think I want, but that’s sub­ject to change be­cause it’ll de­pend on what the per­son­nel do.

“We had a num­ber of play­ers that weren’t in­volved to­day. They didn’t play any min­utes due to small in­juries, so we’ll try to get them in­volved on Thurs­day as well. We’ve not touched on the tac­ti­cal side of it yet. Just get­ting the feet un­der­neath them.”

Very re­spect­ful. But he’s des­per­ate to play. And I want play­ers who are des­per­ate to play for this foot­ball club.

 ?? WHITE­CAPS/IN­STA­GRAM ?? Ken­dall Was­ton gives 15-year-old White­caps res­i­dency player Si­mon Colyn a hug af­ter he made his first-team de­but in Hawaii in a friendly against the Hokkaido Con­sadole Sap­poro squad.
WHITE­CAPS/IN­STA­GRAM Ken­dall Was­ton gives 15-year-old White­caps res­i­dency player Si­mon Colyn a hug af­ter he made his first-team de­but in Hawaii in a friendly against the Hokkaido Con­sadole Sap­poro squad.

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