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2017-18 US Youth Soccer National League Girls continue play in Bradenton, Fla.


2017-18 US Youth Soccer National League Girls continue play in Bradenton, Fla.

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BRADENTON, Fla. (Jan. 14, 2018) — The 2017-18 US Youth Soccer National League Girls continued an exciting season with many meaningful and competitive matches Sunday at the IMG Academy for the US Youth Soccer Winter Showcase in Bradenton, Fla. The girls teams competing in Bradenton will wrap up their season on Monday, while the rest of the league will compete March 16-18 in Las Vegas before standings are finalized.

In addition to the National League matches, 36 US Youth Soccer Regional League teams competed in showcase games at the event.

Sunday saw Campton United 1 (IL) secure the first National League girls’ division title, as it used a 1-0 victory to clinch the 18U Black Division crown. Campton coach Scott Keena said the competition level adds to the accomplishment, as his team has had to work hard for every win — including three that have come by just one goal.

“It feels great to win the division,” Campton coach Scott Keena said. “These kids have worked hard, and we came here to win it and get to Texas, and we’ve achieved that goal. The competition has been good. Each and every game has been tough.”

By winning the division, Campton punched a ticket to the US Youth Soccer National Championships this summer is Frisco, Texas. Keena said his team should be familiar with the level of play it will see in Frisco after going through this National League season.

“Being in the National League, you’re playing against the country’s best. Obviously, that’s what we’re going to be rolling into in Texas,” Keena said. “We’re going to be playing against some of the best teams in the country. This helps us prepare for them because you can’t be complacent. You can’t come in at 80 or 90 percent. You’ve got to be at 100 percent to get a result. This is great preparation for us, and we look forward to the challenge.”

The National League features the top 256 teams in the 14U through 18U Boys and Girls age groups. With teams in each age group divided into eight-team divisions, each side has had to earn its place in the league through success in US Youth Soccer Regional Leagues and National Championship Series play.

The National League is an extension of the highly successful US Youth Soccer Regional Leagues (US Youth Soccer Eastern Regional League, Midwest Regional League, Southern Regional Premier League and Far West Regional League). The National League provides an avenue for teams to play in meaningful matches against top competition from across the country for continued development and opportunities for exposure at the national team, collegiate and professional levels.

National League action will continue Monday, Jan. 15, at the IMG Academy. Complete standings, scores and schedules, including goal scorers and match information, can be found at the results page here. Click on the score of each game for more information.

Some highlights from Sunday’s matches…

CSA Impact United 03 Black (OH-N) currently holds the first place spot in the 15U Red Division thanks to a 3-0 victory over SDFC Yellow (NJ). The Ohio North side has a 4-0-2 record on the season. CSA maintained calm and steady play throughout the entire game, maintaining a lot of the possession, and in the 38th minute, Gianna Carcelli put CSA on the board. CSA continued to pass the ball around with only a few chances taken for SDFC. The New Jersey side did well to keep the score at 1-0, especially when CSA’s Elizabeth Vorhees had an open shot after a miscue in the SDFC backline, but defender Aryanna Perez slid to keep the ball out of the net. CSA eventually added another goal to its advantage as Vorhees dropped the ball back for Keira Vesy to place the ball in the net. To top off the match, Sydney Schaeffer passed the ball into the goal after the CSA offense had the keeper beat.

North United Rush (PA-W) came back from a one-goal deficit to defeat Sporting OFC 2002 Elite (NE), 2-1, giving North United the first place position in the 16U Black Division. The match started and finished as an intense back-and-forth battle. As a Sporting free kick just outside of the 18-yard box was blocked, Sporting reset and played the ball over North United’s backline — where the ball was flicked on for Maranda Kavan to tap it into the goal. North United did not allow the goal to affect it and continued to work, eventually earning the equalizer at the end of the first half thanks to Ellie Coffield. Sporting came out of halftime with determination to gain the go-ahead goal as the team pressed high and produced multiple shots. However, North United slowly began to create its own chances, including one opportunity where Megan Donnelly ran onto a through ball with plenty of open space, yet her shot skimmed just outside of the left goal post. North United’s Megan Park also found herself with a lot of space and ran the ball down, but Sporting goalkeeper Sidney Anderson cut off the angle to block the ball in time. The Pennsylvania West’s effort finally paid off as Donnelly took another chance and put the ball in the back of the net. While Sporting pushed hard and pounded shots on goal, North United walked away with the win.

A late goal helped FC United 02 Pre Academy (IL) earn a 1-1 draw with Solar 02 Naizer (TX-N) to gain another important point in the 16U Blue Division. The Illinois side played from behind for much of the match after Brooklyn Davis scored a fifth-minute goal to put Solar in front. Despite pressure from FC United, the North Texas side managed to hold on to the lead for more than an hour of play. However, FC United finally managed to find the back of the net when the ball found Ellie Zern in a crowded box, where she hit her shot past the keeper. Both teams pushed for an equalizer in the final minutes, but the match ended in a draw. FC United will face division leader Nationals Union 02 Black (MI) on Monday in a key matchup for positioning near the top of the standings.

A 5-1 win over Nationals Union 02 Red (MI) on Sunday helped CDA Premier 02 (KY) extend its lead to three points at the top of the 16U Red Division standings. Haley Fulton started an early scoring run for CDA, as she put the Kentucky side in front in the second minute. Emma Niehaus and Katie Brock each scored in quick succession, and the CDA lead grew to 3-0 by the 16th minute. Kaitlyn Andrews added to the advantage shortly after halftime before Sarah Wist pulled a goal back for Nationals Union. Kamryn Keehan immediately responded to stretch the CDA lead back to four goals and cap the Kentucky side’s 5-1 victory.

FC Florida 2001 Elite Blue Predators (FL) earned a much-needed win against 1776 United FC 01 Xtreme (PA-E) to stand on top of the 17U Black Division. FC Florida, 1776 United and idle Premier Navy 2001 (MD) each hold 12 points in the division. Tianna Hogan opened up the scoring for FC Florida in the 10th minute, and Jordan Stack added a second just six minutes later. As 1776 pressured FC Florida, hoping to get into the game, FC Florida shut its opponent down with a 69th-minute goal from Nicole Vernis. FC Florida found Vernis at the back post, and while the 1776 defense believed her to be offside, Vernis continued on, taking a touch past a defender and striking the ball into the back of the net. Vernis topped off the match with a second goal in the 80th minute to complete FC Florida’s 4-0 win.

With a 1-0 victory over 01 WHYFC White (NC), FC Frederick 01 (MD) climbed up in the 17U White Division standings. While the first half did not produce many dangerous opportunities for either team, the second half was a different story. FC Frederick took control of the game and began to get closer to goal with several chances involving Annabel Anderson. FC Frederick continuously found Anderson with through balls, and she eventually capitalized on one of her runs as she raced to the ball, beat the goalkeeper and placed the ball in the net. WHYFC nearly tied the game when Courtney Dwertman ran onto a long ball and played it across the goal to Vivian Jones, but FC Frederick goalkeeper Alayna Burgamy came off her line and prevented Jones from getting a clear shot off. Hungry for another, FC Frederick continued to take consecutive shots, and though the insurance goal never came, the Maryland side walked away, satisfied with the victory.

With its sixth win in six games, Campton United 1 (IL) became the first girls team to punch a ticket to Nationals, as it won the 18U Black Division. Facing a familiar opponent in CDA Premier 00 (OH-S), the Illinois side got off to a quick start and grabbed an early lead on Rachel Lutter’s goal in the second minute. CDA didn’t go away quietly and generated some sustained pressure in its attacking half throughout the second half. The Ohio South side nearly pulled level in the 68th minute, when Eva Kiper received a pass at the top of the box and quickly turned to send a left-footed shot for the far corner of the net. However, Campton keeper Zoe Welsh quickly moved to her left and pushed the shot wide of the post. The Campton defense, which has conceded just one goal this season, made sure Lutter’s early breakthrough held up, as the Illinois side claimed the 1-0 victory to secure the division crown.

FC United 2000 Pre Academy (IL) jumped over CFCIU (OH-N) in the 18U White Division standings with a dominant win in Sunday’s matchup between the two sides. Maggie Brett kicked off a standout performance with a goal in the second minute, and she doubled the FC United lead with a 17th-minute strike. Makayla Stadler added to the Illinois side’s lead later in the half, and Brett secured a first-half hat trick when she placed her 30th-minute shot from the middle of the box under the bar. Sophia Doerr added another goal shortly before halftime, and Anissa Nourse extended FC United’s lead with another tally in the second half. CFCIU generated some sustained second-half offensive pressure and cashed in with a Kayla Wypasek goal. However, FC United’s early offensive outburst propelled it to a decisive win.

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