CHARLESTON, S.C. (May 28. 2013) – Following two days of intense competition in LaGrangeville, N.Y., the National Cup XII Northeast Regional drew to a close on Monday after crowning 13 champions from 11 different clubs.
The action included more than 65 teams from five states taking the fields at Stringham Park and LaGrange Middle School, with the event shortened to two days due to heavy rains and flooded fields on Saturday. In the end, 11 winners from the U-13 through U-17 age groups qualified for the National Cup XII Finals, which will be held July 18-21 at Aurora Sports Park in suburban Denver.
There, they will meet top teams from across the country in the final event of US Club Soccer’s cup-based national championship competition.
At the Northeast Regional, two clubs came away with a pair of trophies each on the boys side, as Rochester FC won the U-11 and U-14 Premier Groups, while Ironbound SC notched victories in the U-15 and U-17 Super Groups. It was also a repeat title for the U-15 Ironbound SC Premier Strikers, who won the U-14 Super Group last year.
“We’re always looking for the best competition for the club overall, and we feel that competing in the Regionals with the opportunity to go to the National Cup XII Finals is one of the best ways to promote our program,” Ironbound Director of Operations John Soares said. “Coming out of the Northeast Regional with two championships is a great accomplishment, and we look forward to these teams being able to add to the four other national championships that we have in our history.”
Ironbound SC wasn’t the only club to have repeat success. The Soccer Plus Academy Whitecaps followed their 2012 U-15 boys Super Group championship with a U-17 Premier Group title, and on the girls side, the Mount Laurel United Flash took home the U-14 Premier Group trophy, building off of their U-13 Super Group triumph last year.
“After winning last year and going to Chicago for the National Cup XI Finals in the Super Group, the team wanted to go back and try to repeat and be back-to-back champs,” head coach Chris Vaughan said. “It was a goal of the team to go back and give it another try. They did great, and it was a very well-run tournament so we’re happy to have done it again.”
Eastern FC brought familiar faces of its own to the Northeast Regional in the form of two defending boys champions, the U-15 Reds and U-17 Blues. While those two squads didn’t manage to repeat, the Eastern FC Lancers won the U-16 boys Premier Group to book a place in the National Cup XII Finals, and they also have a chance to earn more national recognition via the National Premier Leagues (NPL).
With their season in the New York Club Soccer League drawing to a close, the Lancers are in first place with an opportunity to qualify for the NPL Champions Cup, which will be held alongside the National Cup XII Finals this summer.
“They’ll be going anyway, either to the National Cup XII Finals or representing the National Premier Leagues,” Eastern FC Boys Director Beau Morki said. “This makes 11 teams in five years that we have sent to nationals. It goes to show how much our players and their parents dedicate to the game, and how much our club and our coaches dedicate to developing talent and players.”
Adding to the festive environment around the event, Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott welcomed players, parents and fans to its promotional tent for giveaways and a chance to win tickets to a World Cup qualifier. The Official Hotel of US Club Soccer, Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott will have a presence at many upcoming US Club Soccer events, including all seven Regional events and the National Cup XII Finals.
A full list of National Cup XII Northeast Regional champions is below, and photos of the winning teams are available here:
BOYS: U-11 Premier Group: Rochester FC (N.Y.) U-13 Premier Group: New York Elite FC (N.Y.)* U-14 Premier Group: Rochester FC (N.Y.)* U-15 Super Group: Ironbound SC Strikers (N.J.)* U-15 Premier Group: Pittsburgh FC (Pa.)* U-16 Premier Group: Eastern FC Lancers (N.Y.)* U-17 Super Group: Ironbound SC Fury (N.J.)* U-17 Premier Group: Soccer Plus Academy Whitecaps (N.Y.)*
U-12 Premier Group: Rochester Rhinos (N.Y.) U-13 Premier Group: Parsippany SC Power (N.J.)* U-14 Premier Group: Mount Laurel United SC Flash (N.J.)* U-15 Premier Group: Jersey Knights Daggers (N.J.)* U-16 Premier Group: Seacoast United Mariners (Maine)*
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