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Union's McInerney joins elite teen scoring group
by Mike Woitalla, May 4th, 2010 3:27AM
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[MLS PLAYER SPLOTLIGHT] After Peter Nowak drafted 17-year-old Jack McInerney, the Philadelphia Union coach said the Georgia product had the "soccer brain" to make a quick adjustment to the pros. So far, McInerney has made four appearances off the bench for 75 minutes of action, and last Saturday he scored his first MLS goal, becoming the eighth player in MLS history to score before his 18th birthday.

McInerney, a 5-foot-8, 155-pound striker, left his Atlanta-area youth club Cobb FC at age 14 for the U.S. U-17 national team residency camp in Bradenton, Fla., after being spotted by then-U.S. U-17 coach John Hackworth, who is now Nowak's assistant in Philadelphia.

Playing for U-17 coach Wilmer Cabrera, McInerney scored five goals and assisted three times in three victories in three games at the qualifying tournament for the 2009 U-17 World Cup. At the finals, he scored twice.

He entered the game at Los Angeles in the 56th minute with the Union trailing 3-0 and playing a man down after the ejection of Stefani Miglioranzi. In the 84th minute, McInerney took a pass from Fred and beat keeper Donovan Ricketts with a well-placed low shot.

"It was a good feeling getting that first goal -- but, unfortunately, it came in a loss," McInerney, who turns 18 in August, told the Philadelphia Inquirer.

MLS SCORERS (AGES 17 AND YOUNGER)
Player
(age) season
Freddy Adu (14) 2004
-----------------------------
Santino Quaranta (16) 2001
Eddie Gaven (16) 2003
Jozy Altidore (16) 2006
Abdus Ibrahim (16) 2008
--------------------------------
Eddie Johnson (17) 2001
Arturo Alvarez (17) 2003
Jack McInerney (17) 2010



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