The Braddock Road ’95 Elite poses with their bronze medals
The Braddock Road 1995 team, competing this year in the U-18 division of the Youth Soccer National Championships, came up short in their goal of repeating their 2012 national championship, losing in the semifinals to Beach FC Ingrassia, 2-0.
The ASA Pumas (in blue) on the attack against the VISTA Soccer Galaxy in their final match of the WAGS season
A small, quick figure streaks up the left sideline with the ball as cries of “Mia!” come from the sideline. Challenged by a defender at midfield, without breaking stride she sends the ball to Christy on her right while continuing her run. Christy tries to make a deft turn to finish the give-and-go but instead trips over the ball and falls down.
A national team flashback? No, just the Arundel Soccer Association’s U-11 team – undefeated in Washington Area Girls Soccer league play – showing what they’re capable of, and what they’re still working on. The sophistication of the play is extraordinary. Give-and-gos, overlapping runs, finding the open player, changing the point of attack – they have the right ideas just about every time. “They play like the Charge,” says ASA administrator Rita Hamrick, a high compliment given that the Chesapeake Charge are ASA’s top women’s team and is consistently one of the best in the Women’s Premier Soccer League. (She might be a little biased since her daughter’s on the team.)
If you were an aspiring young soccer player in Europe, you’d try to sign up with the youth academy associated with one of your country’s club teams. Assuming you proved yourself worthy, you’d be taken in hand from the age of 9 or so and brought along year by year, growing and learning every step of the way.
David Jones, who was himself such a young soccer player, nurtured by the storied Manchester United organization all the way up to playing professionally, aims to offer the same opportunity to DC-area girls. To that end, he’s partnered with the Italian Serie A (top-level) women’s team Torino Associazione Calcio Femminile (Torino ACF) to establish a professional, female-only Soccer Centre of Excellence just outside of Washington, DC.
“We’ll provide a complete support system for players and parents so when they join us at U9 level they continue their soccer education all the way up to U18,” said Jones. “Then after players get to college age level, we’ll have not only the WPSL team but a WAWSL team, too.”
Apologies for the delayed reaction on these two stories.
The U-17’s took the 2010 U-16 Nordic Cup last Saturday as they beat Germany 2-0 in the Championship game. This was the first time the team has competed at this tournament at the U-16 age level. The U.S. easily passed through the group stage with a 6-0 rout of the Netherlands, a 3-0 win over host nation Denmark and a 2-1 victory over Norway.
Stephanie Amack and Kodi Lavrusky scored the goals in the Final.
And further West, the U-23 USWNT defeated Sweden’s U-23’s to win the Four Nations Tournament in England on Tuesday. Stanford forward Christen Press scored the only goal in the win.
The team recovered well after losing its second game 2-1 to Norway. It had won its first match with an emphatic 3-0 victory over England. Host nation England finished the tournament with zero points while the USA, Sweden and Norway finished on six in the round-robin format. Goal difference gave the United States the edge in the final standings.
Christen Press finished the tournament with three goals. Elli Reed and Danielle Foxhaven had one goal each.