Sporting Kansas City II

SKC II Match Preview: Sporting KC II takes on North Texas SC in clash between top two Frontier Division teams


Sporting Kansas City II (4-2-1, 13 points) will take on North Texas SC (2-0-4, 13 points) in a meeting between the two top teams in the Frontier Division, two months into the season. The colossal clash kicks off at 6 p.m. CT at Rock Chalk Park in Lawrence, Kansas.

MLS NEXT Pro Coach of the Month Benny Feilhaber's group flourished in April, posting a 3-0-1 record with 14 goals scored and 10 points earned. Midfielder Kamron Habibullah buried seven of those goals and assisted on another en route to Player of the Month honors. The Canadian international tallied two hat tricks in four matches and contributed on all four of Sporting KC II's goal in their most recent outing, a 4-1 win over MNUFC2.

Habibullah's seven goals lead the explosive SKC II offense, however, he is just one of eight players to tally for the team this season. Forward Beto Avila ranks second on the team with three goals scored. Fellow striker Pau Vidal, who has been rehabbing from an injury he suffered earlier in the year has two goals along with rookie winger Maouloune Goumballe's two finishes.

In the assists category, midfielder Ethan Bryant and Sporting KC Academy product Sebastian Cruz each have three to their name. First-team right back Kayden Pierre has a pair of assists while 10 other SKC II players have contributed assists in the league's highest-scoring offensive attack.

In the defensive third first-year professional Nati Clarke is the only player to start all seven matches. The outside back has played on both the left and right side proving his versatility. First-teamer Chris Rindov has made seven appearances for SKC II and leads the team with 17 clearances.

Goalkeeper Ryan Schewe has started six of the seven matches and boasts a 3-2-1 record. Homegrown keeper John Pulskamp made his 2024 SKC II debut in the win over Minnesota, making seven clutch saves to preserve the Sporting lead.

The Academy has seen an increased role in the 2024 SKC II game plan. Defender Jacob Bartlett leads all amateur SKC II players with five starts. The 18-year-old picked up his first pro assist last week, teeing up Habibullah's third goal of the contest. Centerback Ian James made his second pro start at just 15 years old against Minnesota. Brandon Munson made his pro debut in the match and forward Ryan Reid made his second appearance of the season after making five in the innagualr MLS NEXT Pro season.

North Texas enters Sunday as the only undefeated team remaining in the Western Conference. Their four draws and three shootout wins are more than any other team in the league this season. They have conceded just five goals in 2024, tied for the fewest goals allowed.

They are led by head coach John Gall who took over on an interim basis midway through the 2023 season. In his first-ever match at the helm, he suffered a 2-1 home defeat to SKC II on July 23, 2023 at Choctaw Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Tarik Scott paces the FC Dallas affiliates with three goals scored this season. Midfielder Diego Garcia and Enes Sali have two goals apiece as North Texas has just eight goals scored on the campaign.

Match Information:

MLS NEXT Pro: Matchweek 8
Date: Sunday, May 5, 2024
Kickoff: 6 p.m. CT
Location: Rock Chalk Park (Lawrence, KS)


Match-specific hashtag: #SKCvNTX