At the world class PDA soccer complex in Somerset, NJ, Century V Boys Gold ’01-’02 were crowned champions of the U13 division in the US Club Soccer Mid-Atlantic Regional tournament on July 2nd. Competing in a tough U13 age bracket, the boys battled in pool play to go 3-0 and win their division, setting up the Championship Game against NPL juggernaut, Global Premier out of Massachusetts.
The newly formed Century V Gold B-U13 played their first four matches as a new team this year. Built from players around the Pittsburgh region including the Century North and South U13’s, the tournament was their first playing together. The boys had a great start, beating a gritty PDA-Kaka team 4-1. With the first game under their belts, they finished with a 3-0 record and clean sheets after their next two games. The boys revealed a powerful offense and shut-down defense going a combined 10 goals for and only conceding 1 goal against. Wins against PDA, NJ Stallions Academy, and BSA Elite solidified the boys place in Regional play.
In the championship game, GPS-MA made their mark first, scoring on a rocket from 20 yards deep. At the half, however, the score was only 1-0 and the title was still within Century’s reach. After a short break and a motivational speech from Head Coach Larry Fingers, the boys battled back to a 1-1 tie midway through the second half and the championship within striking distance.
“The team got more and more familiar with each other,” said Coach Fingers. “Entering the finals against a very talented Global Premier NPL team, which had outscored teams 26-2, the boys played their best game all week.” With their confidence boosted thanks to the second half goal, Century added two more. Their third goal late in the second half closed the door to any GPS comeback, and the U13’s raised the trophy in a victorious effort at the Regional Tournament.
“The boys trained together several times throughout the year. And winning the regional semifinals earned them a berth to the US Club Nationals,” describes Coach Fingers, “They look forward to playing together and competing against some of the top teams in the country.” Up to this point, the team they defeated had a 35-1 record and were ranked fifth in the country by GotSoccer rankings.
Today, the Century boys travel to Grand Park in Indianapolis to compete in the 14th annual US Club Soccer National Cup in the U13 Supergroup. Continues Coach Larry, “This will be an amazing environment and experience for the team,” playing teams from Sacramento, Minneapolis, Boston, as well as teams representing Florida, Hawaii, North Carolina, and others. “As we close the summer and prepare for the fall season,” says Larry, “The boys are excited to finish strong.”
Century V plays MTA out of Minneapolis on Friday at 1 p.m. to kick off the tournament, and if they make to the finals, will finish on Monday, July 20.
Follow the game action on twitter @CenturyVB0102.