39th annual WAGS Tournament hosting more than 400 top teams, 180 college coaches
(Via WAGS) – The 39th annual WAGS Tournament will play out over Columbus Day Weekend, with more than 400 top level girls soccer teams from all over the country ready to square off at complexes throughout Northern Virginia.
One of the top-ranked tournaments annually, the 2014 edition will feature top U11 to U19 teams from both US Youth Soccer and US Club Soccer organizations, including 46 state, four regional, one national champions from the 2013/14 US Youth Soccer National Championship Series, and numerous top Elite Clubs National League teams in the U14 and older age groups.
Coaches representing more than 180 college programs from every division have registered to attend the tournament, including top teams such as No. 3 ranked UCLA, No. 9 Virginia Tech, No. 11, Virginia and No. 24 Rutgers among many others.
Matches will be played at 22 of the area’s premier facilities such as Evergreen Park and Morven Park in Leesburg, George Mason University in Fairfax, and Long Bridge Park near along the Potomac River in Arlington.
Since 1975, the WAGS Tournament has been a national competition, and now regularly features teams from every corner of the United States. This year, 243 participating teams are from outside the D.C. area. First-year WAGS President Sally D’Italia said that while the tournament continues to grow in national prestige, the main goal of the event remains a constant.
“Our league was created to support female athletes and give them the best environment possible, and this tournament is no different,” D’Italia said. “We provide some things that other events can’t provide, and of course being in the national capital region, where there’s so much history and other things to experience, that’s what we want for all of our teams.”
“It is a great opportunity for teams to compete against the best in the country, and for players to get recruited for college,” D’Italia added.
For the past three years, the WAGS Tournament has been run by Elite Tournaments, a Columbia, Md.-based management company which has revamped the already well-regarded event. Since coming aboard, Elite has added a referee mentor program, which features 12 FIFA-qualified referees providing guidance for 60 referees from 14 states.
Elite has also established a valuable partnership with the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, which grants free NSCAA memberships for all WAGS Tournament coaches and gives the event exposure at the association’s annual conference.
The event will also feature the SoccerWire.com Mobile Media Center stationed at Evergreen Sportsplex in Leesburg all weekend. The 200 square foot mobile press center houses the popular soccer news website’s social media operations in addition to providing private workspace for attending media, as well as doubling as a hospitality respite for event VIPs and college coaches.
In all, clubs from Canada and the following 22 U.S. states will be represented: Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Delaware, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, North Carolina, Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky, Illinois, Texas, West Virginia, Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina, Wisconsin, Kansas, Arizona, California and Massachusetts.