Six Matanuska Soccer Club teams recently concluded competition in a spate of summer travel tournaments, highlighted by the United 98 boys dominating performance at the Sounders FC Adidas Cup at the Starfire Sports Complex in Tukwila, Washington.
Starting things off, the MSC United 92 and 98 boys, the latter traveling as AKFC 98 United under the US Club Soccer arm of Matanuska Soccer Club, competed in the Sounders FC Adidas Cup, with the 98s winning top honors at the tournament, scoring 24 and allowing only 1. United 92 also reached a milestone while in Tukwila, winning their first out-of-state game, with James Meaney’s goal giving the boys a 1-0 victory during pool play.
Following the Sounders Cup, the two teams traveled to Camp Brotherhood in Mount Vernon, WA, for a weeklong Coerver® team camp. A highlight of the week in residence was the arrival of U.S. Under-18 player and UCLA commit Kelyn Rowe, who both assisted with the curriculum and took part in each evening’s 3v3 World Cup tournament. After Brotherhood, the teams traveled to Burlington for the US Club Regionals, where each represented MSC well--the 98s 4-0 destruction of Boca Juniors from Eugene (OR) Metro Futbol Club being one of the tournament’s outstanding performances.
In July, things continued for MSC teams with the Polaris 96 and 97 girls each taking part in the Nike Crossfire Challenge in Redmond, WA. For both teams it was the first travel experience, and the 97s in particular performed excellently, coming back to win both of their group games after a disappointing opening-match loss. Only goal-differential kept the girls out of the semifinals--well done!
For the 96 girls, competing in an ultra-tough Gold Division, things went differently, as they had to face A teams from Washington Premier (eventual tournament champions), the host club (Crossfire Premier) and Lake Oswego Soccer Club (OR), who had just earned final-four honors at the recent US Youth Soccer Region IV Championships in Lancaster, CA. Amazingly, Lake Oswego was beaten twice by the Washington clubs, and MSC found themselves in a tight game with the regional semifinalists until the match was suspended due to lightning.
Wrapping up the summer events, our United 95 and 96 boys also traveled to Redmond, WA, for the boys weekend of the Nike Crossfire Challenge, and after enjoying a day at the Sounders-Chelsea match at Qwest Field, each put together a solid run of tournament games. After a narrow defeat in their opening contest, the 95s picked up an important win in the next round and if not for a late goal in their third game, could have found themselves in the semifinals.
MSC United 96 started exceptionally strong, winning their first two matches without conceding a goal and setting up a knockout game in their last match of the preliminary round. Unfortunately, having dominated play for sixty minutes, the boys gave up an unlucky goal and fell 1-0, which gave them second place in the tournament.
Next up for MSC teams -- the United 98 boys are off to Huntington Beach, CA, to take on the best in the West in the NHB Cup over Labor Day weekend.