ST. LOUIS (Nov. 8, 2020) — The 2020 US Youth Soccer Midwest Conference Girls St. Louis Showcase came to a close on Sunday, as teams completed the weekend of action at the SLYSA Complex in St. Louis, Mo.
More than 70 Midwest Conference teams, including all Premier I and Premier II Division teams in the 15U-19U Girls age groups, competed in some of the final games of their fall season during the showcase. This weekend saw six teams clinch first-place finishes in the Premier I and Premier II Divisions.
In addition to division titles, the weekend included several Premier II Division teams securing finishes near the top of the standings that will result in promotion within the Midwest Conference for next season. Meanwhile, Premier I Division teams competed for a chance to advance to the 2021 US Youth Soccer Midwest Regional Championships.
Sunday featured a key game between the two teams remaining in the hunt for the 19U Premier I Division title, as first-place Lou Fusz Athletic O’Rourke (MO) faced Legends FC 2002 Girls Black (MI). After a tight first half, the Michigan side pulled away in the final 45 minutes to secure a key 5-0 victory — leaving Legends FC one win away from overtaking Lou Fusz for first place and the division title.
“Beforehand, what we really spoke about is after the game having no regrets — feeling like we did whatever we could to make it a positive result,” Legends coach Kevin Oakley said after Sunday’s win. “This is a collection of girls we’ve had together for a number of years. It’s so meaningful being able to close out in a positive way because the group has been such an important team for our club and me personally.”
Oakley said the opportunity to play against top teams, such as the previously unbeaten Lou Fusz side, is what his team looks forward to in the Midwest Conference. Now, Legends FC has a chance to win the Premier I Division with a victory in its last game — the lone contest remaining on the division’s schedule. Should Legends FC finish in first place, it will have the chance to secure a berth to the 2021 USYS Midwest Regional Championships, pending the determination of wildcard slots in the spring.
No matter what the future holds for this season, Oakley said the type of game his team played on Sunday serves as a precursor to what they players may see at the next level.
“This group has several players that are going to go on to do great things at college programs,” Oakley said. “Games like this are preparation for whatever the next thing is for them. In leagues, sometimes not all the games feel impactful. It’s very rare that you have the opportunity to play a game where this is something on the line, and those are the most fun games and the ones we look forward to the most.”
Some notes from Sunday’s matches:
- In the 14U Premier I Division, Friday’s results allowed Nationals Union 07 Girls Black (MI) to secure a first-place finish.
- With a 2-0 win over Polonia 06 Red Eagles (WI), Michigan Fire Juniors 06G Navy (MI) clinched the 15U Premier I Division title.
- With its results this weekend, Michigan Tigers FC 2006 Girls Gold (MI) finished in first in the 15U Premier II Division.
- In the 16U Premier I Division, Kingdom SC 05 Red (MI) holds a goal differential edge over Lou Fusz Athletic Tottleben 05 (MO) after the two sides tied, 1-1, on Sunday. Kingdom has a key match next weekend against Liverpool Central 05 G Academy (MI), which has two games left and could move into first place with a result in each.
- Elmbrook United Elite (WI) picked up a 2-0 win over Michigan Hawks 05 Dugan (MI) on Sunday to clinch the title in the 16U Premier II Division. Every result was magnified in the group, as five teams finished within six points of Elmbrook.
- Legends FC 2004 Girls Black (MI) earned a 3-1 win against Real WC Elite 2004 (MO) to clinch first place in the 17U Premier I Division.
- In a matchup of the top two teams entering Sunday in 17U Premier II Division, Pegasus FC Premier 2004 (IL) secured a 4-1 win over Alliance FC Academy Elite 04 (MO). That result allowed Pegasus to finish in first place.
- After this weekend, Croatian Eagles Red 2003 (WI) has a three-point lead at the top of the 18U Premier I Division standings. However, Evolution 03 Girls Mercurial (IL) has a game remaining and could clinch the division title with a win.
- In the 18U Premier II Division, DCFC West 03 Maroon (MI) shut out previous group leader MI Burn 03 Black (MI), 2-0, to move into first place.
- Legends FC 2002 Girls Black (MI) handed Lou Fusz Athletic O’Rourke (MO) its first loss of the season on Sunday. The big shutout victory by Legends FC keeps its in contention for the 19U Premier I Division title, as it plays its final match of the season next weekend.
The Midwest Conference is one of 13 Conferences under the USYS National League in the multi-state tier, and it consists of teams primarily from Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, Missouri, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota.
To follow the Midwest Conference results and standings this weekend, click here.
Click here for more information on the Midwest Conference. For more information on all of the National League Conferences, the National League Showcase Series, and the National League Playoffs, click here.