Finals concluded today in Overland Park, KS, wrapping up a thrilling weekend filled with tons of talent and dogged determination as the creme of the crop took home U13-U19 boys and girls US Youth Soccer National titles for 2013.
Legends FC 99 (CA-S) have a lot to celebrate after beating out tough Michigan Hawks 00 (MI) 1-0 for the U13 National title. Elaily Hernandez-Repreza scored the winning goal in the 30th minute of play to give her team the lead, and they kept a strong hold on the scoreboard for the remainder.
Eastside FC 98 Red (WA) and YMS Xplosion 98 (PA-E) clashed in a closely contested final, but EFC emerged victorious 2-1, with a determined back line keeping their lead secure. Joanna Harber and Ellie Bryant supplied a comfortable first half lead, but YMS’ Julia Lindsey started to make them sweat with a 60 minute goal of her own. But, EFC stayed strong and were able to power it to the end.
Eclipse Elite Black 97-98 (IL) and Ambassadors FC (OH-N) had a long evening, tying 1-1 in regulation before moving into overtime to seal the deal. Leading scorer Sarah Krause scored first for AFC in the 15th minute, but Zoe Redei equalized for Eclipse just minutes from the end to leave spectators in suspense. Eclipse charged in overtime, tallying three goals- a brace from Alissa Gorzak and another from Redei, to give Eclipse the win, and the title.
What a thrilling final it was for DMCV Sharks Elite (CA-S) and Kings Hammer Academy (OH-S), as both refused to back down, pushing into penalty kicks to decided who would wear the National crown. KHA got on the board with a 26th minute goal from Brittany Mahoney and Kirsten McBeain equalized for DMCV in the 69th. It was on for overtime, but both teams kept neck-and-neck with a goal from KHA’s Lauren Nemeroff and another from DMCV’s Natalie Saddic to prompt Pk’s. That’s where DMCV pulled ahead, netting all five to take the U16 title.
It was a day of draws apparently, as Cleveland United White (OH-N) and Match Fit Chelsea Beat (NJ) pushed into overtime with a 1-1 draw in regulation. CUSC’s Alexis Manoa got an early 4th minute goal, establishing a lead that carried into the second half, but that lead would fall quickly. BEAT’s Brianna Robinson equalized in the 45th minute and OT would be the deciding factor. It was Kelly Novak who saved the day for CUSC, scoring the winning goal that garnered the U17 National crown.
Yup, you guessed it- more overtime. Team Chicago Academy-Botafogo (IL) came out on top after a long final game, defeating VSA Heat Blue (VA) with winning goal scored by Zoe Swift. Swift also scored the opener for TCB in the 11th minute of regulation, and it was HEAT’s Cassidy Mercier who supplied the equalizer in the second half.
There was more overtime drama, this time for the U19 girls with NASA 12 Elite II (GA) beating tough SC Blues (CA-S) in overtime following a scoreless draw. NASA doubled up in the beginning of OT with consecutive goals from Caroline Waters and Kelsey Nix, and though SCB’s Jocelyn Blankenship added last minute goal for her team, it wouldn’t be enough to catch the determined NASA champ.