2022 Girls Academy Playoffs Preview

2022 Girls Academy Playoffs Preview
by Travis Clark
June 21, 2022

It's a busy week in girls club soccer, with the Girls Academy League playoffs beginning on June 22.

U13, U14 and U19 teams begin on June 22, with Under-15 (June 23), Under-17 (June 24) and Under-16 sides (June 25) all beginning shortly after.

The oldest and youngest age groups will crown champions in California on June 27, while the other four age groups will send a final four to Missouri to compete in the National Finals.

Below is a preview of each age group.

U13

Group A

Group B

Houston Dash YSC

Nationals Blue

FC Bay Area Surf

TopHat Gold

Philadelphia Ukrainian Nationals

Lonestar SC

City SC

ALBION SC Las Vegas

Group C

Group D

Colorado Rush

SDSC Surf

SJEB FC

NEFC

South Shore Select

Cincinnati United

Spokane Sounders

South Carolina Surf SC

The youngest age group gets into the mix with several familiar teams looking to chase a championship, as the U13s will award a champion in California.

Colorado Rush enjoyed a tremendous season, amassing an impressive 92 goals. The storied club side can carry that form over to California and will be a difficult opponent to defeat. Going up against South Shore Select, which won this year's Champions League event, should be a high-level battle.

Striking a balance between a suffocating defense and a strong attack, Houston Dash Youth conceded just six goals from regular season action. That will certainly come in handy.

The tussle in Group B should be a fascinating one. Nationals SC are an impressively strong team, though will certainly be pushed by TopHat Gold, Lonestar SC and Albion Las Vegas.

U14

Group A

Group B

Lou Fusz Athletic

TopHat Gold

Beadling SC

SJEB FC 

Baltimore Armour Academy

Michigan Jaguars

City SC

Clovis Crossfire

Group C

Group D

Nationals Blue

ALBION SC Las Vegas 

Lamorinda SC 

TSJ FC Virginia 

South Carolina Surf SC 

TBD

Houston Dynamo Dash YSC 

TopHat Navy

Group E

Group F

LA Surf Soccer Club

NEFC 

IMG Academy

Indy Premier SC 

STA

Colorado Rush 

Spokane Sounders Shadow 

Santa Clara Sporting

A relentless squad that hit the century mark, Nationals SC certainly will be among the favorites when this age group begins. The squad won this year’s Champions League competition.

There’s going to be a relentless chasing pack of quality teams looking to defeat the Michigan powerhouse. Both TopHat Gold and Indy Premier have been lethal in the final third, scoring 77 and 87 games on the season respectively.

Lou Fusz Athletic, LA Surf SC, Albion SC, SJEB FC, Lamorinda SC and TSJ FC Virginia all finished in the top 10 of the national standings, enjoying impressive overall campaigns. Don’t be surprised to see if sides like IMG Academy and Beadling SC can cause problems when things kick off later this week.

U15

Group A

Group B

City SC 

SC del Sol 

Houston Dynamo Dash YSC 

Baltimore Celtic Soccer Club

Nationals Gray

STA 

Colorado Rush 

Chicago FC United 

Group C

Group D

Lou Fusz Athletic 

TopHat Gold

IMG Academy 

OL Reign Academy

SC Wave

Indy Premier SC

ISC Gunners

Lonestar SC 

Group E

Group F

Lamorinda SC 

Nationals Blue

TSJ FC Virginia 

NYSC 

Salvo SC

Spokane Sounders Shadow

Utah Celtic 

Cedar Stars Academy - Monmouth

Group G

Group H

Philadelphia Ukrainian Nationals 

NEFC 

Cincinnati United 

FC Bay Area Surf

ALBION SC San Diego

Florida United 

Palo Alto SC

Michigan Jaguars

The top teams in the 2007 age group features an array of talent from around the country.

First place in the overall national standings, TopHat Gold strung together an unbeaten regular season, winning 21 games and drawing just twice. The Georgia power are certainly among the favorites to win the group. But as the Champions League event showed, anything can happen, as Top 10 finishers Cincinnati United Premier won the event that year.

Strength is going to come to California from every region. Lamorinda SC won’t have too long of a trip to make, while SC del Sol’s had a strong season, posting a 21-1-3 record out west. Group foes Chicago FC United have done an excellent job overall, with three teams making it to the playoffs. Among the teams with the shortest commutes, City SC has produced quality in the past and seeks to do the same again this week.

Moving out east, there are several clubs that have enjoyed success this season. NEFC, TSJ FC Virginia and Philadelphia Ukrainian Nationals are among the highest finishers from teams on the east coast. Baltimore Celtic and IMG Academy are also two teams to watch that face long journeys this week.

U16

Group A

Group B

TopHat Gold

Nationals Blue

South Shore Select 

STA 

Lou Fusz Athletic

West Coast F.C.

ALBION SC Las Vegas

West Coast Soccer

Group C

Group D

Washington Timbers FC

Lonestar SC 

IMG Academy 

Cincinnati United

Oakwood Soccer Club

PA Classics 

SJEB FC 

Spokane Sounders Shadow

Group E

Group F

Colorado Rush 

NEFC 

Palo Alto SC 

Sporting Saint Louis 

Indy Premier SC

SC del Sol 

Florida United 

Century V Soccer

Group G

Group H

ALBION SC San Diego 

TSJ FC Virginia 

Lamorinda SC 

Bridge City Soccer Academy

Michigan Jaguars

Chicago FC United

Las Vegas Sports Academy 

BVB International Academy Texas 

From both depth and quality perspective, this is an age group stacked with talent and should prove to be extremely competitive.

TSJ FC Virginia has a 20-0-0 record, and can provide quality on both sides of the ball. But it’s a long list of teams that will set out on the journey this week looking to win. IMG Academy’s group found the back of the net 67 times in 23 games, conceding just 12 on the way. Colorado Rush won this year’s Champions League event, putting things together in Florida and will look to do so again.

Outside of the top three seeds, there are several others. NEFC was strong in the Northeast, while Tophat Gold impressed in the Southeast along with IMG. Albion SC Dan Diego was one of the top teams out in California, along with Lamorinda SC and Palo Alto SC. Lonestar SC, STA and Nationals are some of the other teams that can really make a push in California.

U17

Group A

Group B

Utah Celtic 

TSJ FC Virginia 

Lou Fusz Athletic 

STA

AFC Lightning

Cincinnati United

City SC

ALBION SC San Diego

Group C

Group D

OL Reign Academy 

Sporting Saint Louis 

TopHat Gold

NEFC

Nationals Blue

Washington Timbers FC 

ALBION SC Las Vegas

Indy Premier SC

Group E

Group F

SC Wave 

LA Surf Soccer Club 

PA Classics 

Colorado Rush 

Houston Dynamo Dash YSC

Lonestar SC 

Broomfield Soccer Club

Michigan Jaguars

Group G

Group H

Oakwood Soccer Club 

Florida United 

IMG Academy 

Chicago FC United

Sockers FC Chicago

Cedar Stars Academy - Monmouth 

Clovis Crossfire

Spokane Sounders Shadow 

Spring Champions League winners Florida United boast the highest scoring offense in the Under-17 age group, and can certainly bring a high-octane attack. That is sure to give Group H plenty of problems, as Chicago FC United, Cedar Stars Academy-Monmouth and Spokane Sounders Shadow look to pull off the upset.

But the South Florida side is far from the only team that’s enjoyed a strong 2021-22 campaign out there. Utah Celtic’s 20-1-1 record reflected a side that enjoyed success on both sides of the ball, second only to Florida United in total goals at the 05 age group. Northeast standouts Oakwood SC are also a team to be reckoned with, posting a 17-1-1 mark.

Other typically strong GA sides dot the Top 10, including a very good TopHat Gold squad, Colorado Rush, STA, IMG Academy and Lou Fusz Athletic. Sporting Saint Louis, PA Classics, OL Reign and SC Wave are some of the other sleeper teams that can make some noise.

U18/19

Group A

Group B

Utah Celtic 

TSJ FC Virginia 

TopHat Gold

OL Reign Academy 

FC Bay Area Surf 

West Coast F.C. 

Michigan Jaguars 

Houston Dynamo Dash YSC 

Group C

Group D

Florida United 

Sockers FC Chicago 

City SC 

Sporting Saint Louis 

Colorado Rush 

IMG Academy 

NEFC 

PA Classics 

It’s the end of an impressive era for Bay Area Surf, the side put together from the San Jose Earthquakes Girls Academy side that dominated the Development Academy a few years ago. Assuming the talented senior class is there, the NorCal side puts its 17-0-0 mark on the line in the final chase for one last title.

The oldest age group will crown a champion in Oceanside, as several seniors play their final club games before embarking on their college careers. Chasing the Champions League winners will be a field full of talent. Sockers FC has just one defeat on the season, while Florida United brings strength from its 03/04 age group.

With just 16 teams making the trip, the margin of error will be small for teams to advance. Keep an eye on Group B, as the teams that advance there could be a handful. TSJ, FC Virginia, OL Reign Academy, West Coast FC and Houston Dash are all capable of enjoying a magical week.

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