Semifinals set at US Youth Soccer Far West Regional Championships
HONOLULU (Via US Youth Soccer) — Two days of play remain at the 2018 US Youth Soccer Region Far West Regional Championships after quarterfinals took place Friday at the Waipio Peninsula Soccer Complex in Honolulu. Of the 210 teams who started in the tournament, the dreams of 56 remain alive entering the weekend’s semifinals and finals.
Following a day of rest, the teams showed great energy on Friday as they fought for semifinal berths. For 15U Girls Arizona Arsenal 03 Premier Teal (AZ), the team went to overtime to defeat Impact MN (UT), 2-1. The Arizona club isn’t a common name seen in the Far West Regional semifinals, and the team knows that tomorrow’s match will be a tough one.
“Not a lot of teams in our club have been to the semis, so that’s a big accomplishment for our girls,” head coach Brett Meskill said. “It was a good game [today]. Impact gave us a tough game. They scored on us in the second half. We had to find a way to come back in the last 15 minutes and then got one in overtime and just hung on. They did a great job so credit to them.”
“We’re going to give everything we’ve got tomorrow,” Meskill said. “Hopefully, we can be the first Arsenal team to make the finals at Regionals on the girls side.”
Regional winners of the 13U through 19U age groups earn a berth to the 2018 US Youth Soccer National Championships, which will be played July 23-29 at the Toyota Soccer Center in Frisco, Texas.
The US Youth Soccer National Championships will consist of US Youth Soccer Regional Champions in the 13U through 19U Boys and Girls age groups, as well as the US Youth Soccer National League qualifiers in the 14U through 18U Boys and Girls age groups to complete the field of 96 teams.
Highlights from Friday:
San Diego Surf 05 Academy Select (CA-S) came out with a 4-2 win over Crossfire United 05 THUSC (OR) to move onto the 13U Girls semifinals. Shaela Bradley earned the early lead for Crossfire as she scored in the second minute, but Surf responded well with a Nicole Anderson goal three minutes later. Surf stole the lead when a corner kick sent to the back post was touched by Samantha Wiemann and went into the goal. In the second half, Maryn Wolf increased Surf’s lead by one, and although Bradley scored again for Crossfire, Anderson earned her second goal of the game to top off the match.
LV Revolution FC Gunners (NV) heads to the 14U Boys semifinals after defeating 04 FBSL Tuzos Academy (AZ), 3-2. All five goals took place in the first half, and LV Revolution claimed a 2-0 early lead with a goal from Phillip Camacho in the fourth minute and a second from Maximo Zontecomani five minutes later. While Tuzos pulled one back with a low driven shot from Diego Moran, LV Revolution increased the gap once again when a free kick sent into the box led to a blocked shot, and Sheridan Rodrigues was there to follow it up. Jordin Figueroa Rivera put Tuzos within reach two minutes after Moran’s goal as he scored off of a corner kick play. Despite another full 35 minutes of play, Tuzos was unable to score the equalizer, and Tuzos will go on to the semifinals.
It took a 2-1 overtime win over Impact MN (UT) for Arizona Arsenal 03 Premier Teal (AZ) to earn a place in the 15U Girls semifinals. Arsenal had the majority of the offensive push in the first half with Impact playing more defense, and in the second half, Arsenal continued to string passes together and got shots off but just missed the frame of the goal. In the 59th minute, Impact’s Emma Neff launched a rocket just over the hands of the Arsenal keeper, but Arsenal came right back as Jessie Boult put the ball on target. Four minutes into the first overtime period, Arsenal earned the game winner as Boult scored her second of the match. Despite Impact’s efforts, Arsenal walked away with the victory.
In the 16U Boys age group, LVSA 02 Red (NV) defeated Colorado Rush 02 Academy (CO), 1-0 in overtime. In the first half, both teams matched up evenly. One of the best opportunities for LVSA came when Arturo Reveles blasted a shot, aiming for the top left corner, but Rush goalkeeper Kole Villescas tipped the ball over the goal. In the second half, Reveles tried to get past Villescas again after he beat a few defenders and took a shot, but Villescas cut off the angle to block the shot. LVSA gained the offensive momentum but couldn’t score in the 80 minutes. As the game went into overtime, Reveles finally broke through and scored the only game of the match in the 110th minute.
HSC Bulls Academy (HI) defeated SGV Surf SB/HH (CA-S) to punch its way to the 17U Girls semifinals. The first goal came in the 27th minute with Kelci Sumida taking the credit. Less than 10 minutes later, Lauren Mukaigawa made it a 2-0 game. HSC continued to take control of the game and calmly played the ball around, but Surf came out of halftime with more energy, earning its chances by playing the ball over the HSC defense several times. HSC prevented Surf from capitalizing on any of its opportunities and even got a last-minute goal from Leila Mukaigawa.
It took kicks from the mark to determine that Downtown LVSC 00 Academy (NV) would go through to the 18U Boys semifinals, defeating Slammers FC 00 JL (CA-S), 2-1. Almost a full first half went by before Niko Dongmann netted a goal for LVSC, but Slammers came back in the 51st minute to tie up the match thanks to a Rafael Espinoza goal. Plenty of action took place through the remainder of the game and through two overtime periods, but the two teams had to line up for the kicks from the mark. LVSC claimed the shootout, 4-1 and heads to the next round.
Hawaii Heat FC 99 (HI) claimed a 2-1 victory over Classic Ahwatukee (AZ) to earn a spot in the 19U Girls semifinals. Hawaii had the majority of the offensive opportunities in the first half and took the lead thanks to Hailey Kawamura. After Kawamura received a cross from the right flank, she chest trapped the ball and took a shot, which was blocked but the ball was flicked back across the goal for Kawamura to run the ball into the goal. In the 60th minute, Jamie-Lyn Shimamoto picked up a second goal for Hawaii Heat, and although Classic Ahwatukee’s Madelyn Medina pulled one back, Hawaii Heat finished with the win.