22 Jul Nineteen teams clinch national titles at National Cup XIV Finals
US Club Soccer’s cup-based national championship series came to a close this past week, as 19 teams from around the country earned national championships at the National Cup XIV Finals, held July 17-20 at Grand Park in Westfield, Ind.
The National Cup XIV Finals served as the culminating event of the National Cup XIV, which began with six National Cup XIV Regionals earlier this summer. U-13 through U-17 boys and girls champions from those Regional events, as well as qualifying state cups, secured slots to the Finals.
While at Grand Park, eventual champions and finalists were challenged with group stages, semifinals and finals. Participating teams faced opponents from different regions of the country, which created a high-energy atmosphere. As if the competitiveness wasn’t a strong enough test, a few bouts with severe weather interrupted play at different points throughout group stages, which presented additional mental and physical challenges.
“Just qualifying for the National Cup Finals is an accomplishment,” US Club Soccer Director of Events Chad Williams said. “But for the 19 teams that were able to come out against opponents from all over the country in this competitive environment, that’s really something to be proud of.”
The championship round proved that defense really does win championships, as 12 games featured shutouts. There were a total of 14 different states represented on the final day.
Monday’s national championship game results are listed below:
U-13 Super Group: GPS-MA NPL (Mass.)
GPS-MA NPL (Mass.) 3, San Antonio SC (Ill.) 2
U-13 Premier Group: River Plate SC 24K (Ore.)
River Plate SC 24K (Ore.) 4, Apple Valley SC Storm Academy (Calif.) 1
U-14 Super Group: Olympiacos Chicago City Red 00/01 (Ill.)
Olympiacos Chicago City Red 00/01 (Ill.) 2, Maui United SC ’01 (Hawaii) 0
U-14 Premier Group: Napa United Academy Red (Calif.)
Napa United Academy Red (Calif.) 5, Ocean Township United SA Spartans (N.J.) 0
U-15 Super Group: GPS-MA NPL (Mass.)
GPS-MA NPL (Mass.) 1, FC Florida ’99 Elite (Fla.) 0
U-15 Premier Group: Pateadores SC Riverside (Calif.)
Pateadores SC Riverside (Calif.) 2, PASCO SC Fire (N.J.) 0
U-16 Super Group: FC Stars of Mass NPL (Mass.)
FC Stars of Mass NPL (Mass.) 2, LDC United Italia 98/99 (Pa.) 1
U-16 Premier Group: Charlotte United FC One7 (N.C.)
Charlotte United FC One7 (N.C.) 1, Windy City Pride 71 (Ill.) 0
U-17 Super Group: Cedar Stars Academy (N.J.)
Cedar Stars Academy (N.J.) 4, Club Ohio Green (Ohio) 0
U-17 Premier Group: Charlotte United FC One7 (N.C.)
Charlotte United FC One7 (N.C.) 2, Windy City Pride 65 (Ill.) 0
U-13 Super Group: NEFC Elite (Mass.)
NEFC Elite (Mass.) 3, Match Fit Academy FC NPL (N.J.) 2
U-13 Premier Group: Hawaii Rush ‘02 (Hawaii)
Hawaii Rush ’02 (Hawaii) 3, Cincinnati United Premier Black 01/02 (Ohio) 0
U-14 Super Group: International Girls Futbol Academy 00/01 (N.J.)
International Girls Futbol Academy 00/01 (N.J.) 1, New York SC ’00 (N.Y.) 0
U-14 Premier Group: Cleveland United (Ohio)
Cleveland United (Ohio) 5, Penn United SA Blue (Pa.) 1
U-15 Super Group: Riverhounds Development Academy (Pa.)
Riverhounds Development Academy (Pa.) 2, Arsenal FC of PA Premier Pride (Pa.) 0
U-15 Premier Group: Dakota Rev SC Fusion (Minn.)
Dakota Rev SC Fusion (Minn.) 2, Maryland United ’99 Red (Md.) 1
U-16 Super Group: Carolina Rapids ‘98 (N.C.)
Carolina Rapids ’98 (N.C.) 4, NEFC Elite (Mass.) 3
U-16 Premier Group: Zionsville ’99 Select (Ind.)
Zionsville ’99 Select (Ind.) 2, Northern Steel SC Explosion (Pa.) 0
U-17 Super Group: West Coast Wild (Calif.)
West Coast Wild (Calif.) 4, Riverhounds Development Academy (Pa.) 0
For the U-17 girls Super Group championship, it was a meeting of familiar foes. West Coast Wild defeated Riverhounds Development Academy in a rematch of the National Cup XII Finals two years ago in Colorado. It was West Coast’s fourth consecutive National Cup Finals championship game appearance, including a U-16 girls Super Group title last year.
While its U-17 girls team was a finalist, the Riverhounds Development Academy won a U-15 girls Super Group trophy, continuing the club’s streak of National Cup national championships, as it won the U-16 girls Premier Group last year.
One week after winning a U-13 girls NPL Finals title, NEFC Elite returned to owning the pitch with a U-13 National Cup championship this week. NEFC Elite was edged in the U-16 girls Super Group bracket by one goal to Carolina Rapids ’98, which was one of three North Carolina-based teams that won championships.
GPS-MA NPL (U-13 boys Super Group and U-15 boys Super Group) and Charlotte United FC One7 (U-16 boys Premier Group and U-17 boys Premier Group) were the only clubs to win multiple titles.
Windy City Pride SC placed two teams on the winners’ stage as finalists (U-16 boys Premier Group and U-17 boys Premier Group). Last year, Windy City Pride SC claimed the U-17 boys Premier Group title.
Six teams represented Hawaii at the National Cup XIV Finals, and two of those teams advanced to the championship round. While Olympiacos Chicago City Red 00/01 was able to edge Maui United SC ’01 in the U-14 boys Super Group, Hawaii Rush ’02 captured the U-13 girls Premier Group championship.
“The girls traveled over 3,000 miles to get here,” Hawaii Rush’s U-13 girls coach Justin Fajota said. “(The championship) was well-deserved. We played against teams from California, Ohio, as well as Washington – so all over the nation.”
More than 800 teams participated in this year’s National Cup XIV, including qualifying state cups, National Cup XIV Regionals and the National Cup XIV Finals.