The 2014 US Youth Soccer National Championships, presented by the National Guard, continued Thursday with the third and final day of group play at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown, Md. The Under-13 and Under-19 final matchups are now set, while the final four teams in each of the Under-14 through Under-18 gender age groups have been determined.
Following a rest day on Friday, the Under-14 through Under-18 teams will compete in semifinal games on Saturday morning, and the first champions will be crowned Saturday night when Under-13 and Under-19 sides take the field for their National Championship finals.
Saturday’s finals include the Under-19 Boys Championship, as Concorde Fire Elite (GA) and PDA Harkes (NJ) compete for the James P. McGuire Cup, the oldest and most prestigious trophy in youth sports. The 79th McGuire Cup final kicks off at 8 p.m. ET on Field 11 of the Maryland SoccerPlex.
MORE: Thursday's top girls | Thursday's best boys
Hundreds of college coaches, as well as U.S. Soccer staff, have filled the sidelines to watch some of the best youth soccer players in the United States compete in an intense environment to earn a chance to play for the coveted National Championship title.
All of the teams competing in Germantown earned their place in the National Championships via success in theUS Youth Soccer National Championship Series or the US Youth Soccer National League.
Stories, photos and videos are available following games. Real time scoring is available at http://championships.usyouthsoccer.org.
A few highlights from Thursday’s matches…
Defending champs Under-14 Girls Legends FC 99 (CA-S) tied Sting 00 Flanagan (N-TX) in their final round robin match. Rachel Wasserman gave Sting the lead in the 18th minute, but Alexandra Jaquez recovered for Legends in the 42nd minute of the second half. Both teams were determined to break the tie but the match ultimately ended in the 1-1 draw. The undefeated Cal South side will face Cleveland FC (OH-N) in the semifinal.
First half action led to a 1-1 tie between Under-15 Girls Jacksonville FC 98/99 Elite (FL) and Pride Predators 99 (CO). Leila Azari scored for Jacksonville in the 20th minute, but Brianna Alger found the equalizer for Pride Predators in the 34th minute before halftime. Both teams played defensively in the second half keeping the 1-1 score. The result placed Jacksonville atop standings and Pride Predators at second place advancing both teams to the semifinal round.
YMS Premier Xplosion 98 earned a spot in the U-15 Girls semifinal after defeating Alliance Academy 99 Black (MI) 3-1. The scoring began when Murphy Agnew scored for YMS in the 13th minute, and the goal held up until halftime. At the start of the second half a foul in the box prompted Sadie Misiewicz to go up for a penalty kick and she recovered for Alliance in the 43rd minute. YMS Premier’s Murphy Agnew kept focused and she scored a second goal in the 66th minute for the lead. Andrea Amaro added an insurance goal in the 76th minute for YMS’s win. YMS enters the semifinal with no losses and looks to keep that streak alive against Pride Predators 99 (CO)on Saturday.
There will be a new National Champion in the Under-16 Girls age group after Eclipse Elite Black 97/98 (IL) came up short in Group B. The Illinois side entered the day in position to move on but played to a scoreless draw against group-winner Beach FC 97 Academy (CA-S). A win in the other Pool B contest by Tampa Bay United 97 Premier (FL), which beat Eclipse on Wednesday, bumped the 2013 champions to third place and put Tampa through to the semifinals.
A 1-1 tie against NSA Jaguars (IL) gave U-17 Girls Carlsbad Elite (CA-S) a second place spot in standings and a ticket to the semifinal. Carlsbad started the match with an early goal in the 9th minute by Samantha Haynie. NSA’s Erin Fitzgerald tied the match in the 30th minute, and while both teams tried to break the tie in the second half neither was able to find the back of the net. Carlsbad will take on defending champs DMCV Sharks Elite from Cal South in the semifinal.
KC Metro Dynamos (KS) claimed first place in the standings and advanced to the Under-17 Girls semifinal after defeating 2012 national champs, Legends FC 96 (CA-S), 4-2. The competitive match kicked off seconds after the starting whistle with a header by Dayna Garcia to give Legends the lead. Jamie Kutey brought KC Metro back in the 18th minute by curving a ball to the upper 90 for the 1-1 tie. Five minutes later it was Kutey again with the goal to give KC Metro the 2-1 lead. Legends leveled in the 29th minute when Desarae Felix slotted in a crossed ball. In the second half Jamie Kutey took control of the match for KC Metros with the tiebreaker and insurance in the 78th and 90th minutes respectively.
VSA Heat 96 Blue (VA) takes second place in Group B advancing them to the U-17 Girls semifinal against KC Metro Dynamos (KS) after a 2-2 tie against Kings Hammer (OH-S). Kristin Schnurr and Karina Lacey had VSA Heat up 2-0 at halftime with goals in the 22nd and 39th minutes. Kings Hammer drew even with two goals of their own in the second half with Caroline Mink's goal in the 65th minute and Bayley Feist's equalizer in the 81st minute.
Defending champs DMCV Sharks Elite (CA-S) get one step closer to the Under-17 Girls final after defeating Maitland 96/97 Florida Krush Black (FL) with two second half goals. Angelina Meriwether broke the deadlock in the 60th minute and uplifted DMCV’s spirits prompting a second goal in the 71st minute by Shelby Lee.
VSA Heat Blue (VA) scored three straight goals for the 3-1 win in a rematch of the 2012 National Championship Final against Under-19 Girls Legends FC (CA-S). Morgan Reuther opened the scoring with a strike in the 25th minute. Meghan Cox added a second goal to the VSA Heat score in the 67th minute, and Quincy Slora put them up by three in the 80th minute. Andrea Mensen put Legends on the board with a 90th minute goal but the late attempt was not enough and VSA took the win and the semifinal spot. VSA will face Team Chicago Academy-Botafogo (IL) in the semifinal for a rematch of the 2013 National Championship final.
Under-14 CSA 00 Lobos Rush Premier (TN) needed a win Thursday for a chance to advance, but it couldn’t stop the offensive firepower of United FA 00 Elite (GA). Antonio Thomas Donate gave United a 23rd-minute lead before U.S. National Team forward Andrew Carleton scored three consecutive goals to give the Georgia side a commanding advantage. United’s Carlos Reyes made it 5-0 before Lathan Spadafora scored for Lobos, as United FA secured a 5-1 win to finish first in Group A.
In a battle for second place in the Under-14 Boys Group A, Arlington SA Eagles Red (VA) came away with a 5-1 win over Sporting KC Academy (KS). Edison Giron and Will Socas each scored for Arlington within the first five minutes, and Giacomo Mecagni made it 3-0 with a 13th-minute strike. Giron added another goal for the Virginia side before Abdu Kikhia got Sporting on the score sheet with a 41st minute goal. Liincoln Kickbush found the back of the net in the final minutes to seal Arlington’s victory and place in the semifinals.
Under-14 Raiders FC (IL) earned a big win Thursday against Inner City Mana 00 (TX-S) but needed help in order to advance. Jesus Garibay scored in the early minutes of each half to give Raiders a 2-0 lead after 37 minutes. Isaiah Nieves pushed the Illinois side’s lead to 3-0 before Javier Lujan scored his first of two goals for Raiders. Hernan Delgado scored for Inner City, but Lujan’s second tally wrapped up the 5-1 Raiders win. However, Raiders just missed out on advancing out of Group B due to a tiebreaker.
In a matchup of Cal South squads, United FC Gold 98 (CA-S) edged out Albion SC (CA-S), 1-0, to finish first in the Under-15 Boys Group A. Guillaume Marneau beat the keeper in the 19th minute to spot United a first-half lead. That goal proved to be enough, as the United defense shut down Albion to record a clean sheet.
In Under-16 Boys play, a rematch of last year’s National final between Dix Hills Elite (NY-E) and Santa Barbara SC White (CA-S) once again saw little separate the two teams. Santa Barbara, which edged the New York side in overtime in the 2013 final, controlled possession for various portions of Thursday’s game. The Cal South side eventually broke through in the 75th minute, as Tanner Mees netted the game’s lone goal to give Santa Barbara a 1-0 victory — its third win this week.
FC Dallas Youth 97 Premier (TX-N) jumped to the top of the Under-17 Boys Group A with a 3-1 win Thursdayagainst Fullerton Rangers 96 White (CA-S). Kamar Marriott put Dallas up just two minutes into the game when he found the back of the net. Sergio Lara doubled the lead with a 17th-minute strike, and Jeffrey Withers added a third Dallas goal shortly before halftime. Ronaldo Pineda scored his second goal of the week to pull the Rangers within two, but that’s as close as they got as Dallas held on for the victory.
A pair of early goals helped Waza FC East 96 Jrs. (MI) to a 2-0 win Thursday over Santa Clara Sporting 95 (CA-N) in Under-18 action. Ian Haskin opened the scoring in the 11th minute, and Neil Martorana doubled the Waza lead 10 minutes later when he found the back of the net. The win moved Waza into a tie in the standings with Sporting, and the two sides needed a shootout to decide who would advance. Sporting did well to convert its attempts from the spot, as it won the shootout and moves on to play Saturday.
Defending champion West Coast FC (CA-S) finished first in the Under-18 Boys Group B after a 3-0 win Thursdayagainst GSA 96 Premier (GA). Andres Mendoza put West Coast in front in the 12th minute, and his side took that lead into halftime. Esen Harris pushed West Coast’s advantage to 2-0 with a 58th-minute tally before Nicolo D’Amato wrapped up the 3-0 victory with a goal in the 78th minute.