Orlando City B is heading into the USL playoffs with a match-up that is anything but favorable, as the New York Red Bulls II have been absolutely decimating the competition in league play this season. They've broken Orlando City SC's records for league wins, with 21, and goals scored, with 61, finishing the season nine points clear of second-place Louisville City FC.
With seven homegrown signings, the Red Bulls organization has made grassroots development an integral part of its structure. It comes as no surprise that its greatest strength is often considered its depth, and is supported by the multiple contributors to the team's goal total.
At the heart of it all is Derrick Etienne Jr. serving arguably the USL's strongest striker, Brandon Allen, who finished the regular season with 15 goals, just one shy of the league's golden boot.
Standing 6-foot-1, Allen isn't an imposing man at first sight, but nets across the country are terrified of the former Georgetown Hoya, and for good reason. He does a great job of timing his runs, and is consistently looking to break out for service.
In debuting for New York Red Bulls ll, Allen netted a brace after getting free for a lob pass.
Just two weeks later, he made an appearance for the senior team, subbing on and immediately showing his skill set, albeit finding himself just a hair on the wrong side of the line as this one was called back.
Mark Ridgers has proven to be a valuable netminder for Orlando City B, but he will surely have his hands full with Brandon Allen Saturday night.