West Pines US Youth Soccer Southern Regional Champions & USYS National Championships
Text: Emmanuel Calderón
The U-14 West Pines team under the coaching of Javier Carrillo have made South Florida proud by becoming the 2016 US Youth Soccer Southern Regional Championships. The road to the final was not easy as they had to face the best teams of the southern region. The competition consisted of 3 group matches, a quarter final, a semifinal, and a final.
The first match finished in a 1-0 win against South Carolina, the second match finished with a victory against the Alabama state champions, followed by a 2-0 win against Oklahoma state champions. Finishing top of their group with 9 points they advanced to the Quarter finals where they faced the Mississippi state champs and beat them 5-2. In the semifinal they were put to the test against Atlanta, the southern regional premier league champions, where they won 5-2.
Finally, the finals came against Castle Academy who were the champions of North Carolina. The final score was 2-1 as West Pines became the Region III champions. After becoming the southern regional championships West Pines then qualified for the USYS National championships of 2016 where they made a very respectable appearance.
“Overall it was a great experience and really shows the kind of work we are doing here at West Pines.”
Coach Javier Carrillo
USYS National Championships
In this tournament West Pines was put to the test against the highest level opposition of the nation. In this tournament they beat the National state champs of Southern California with a final score of 1-0, lost 1-0 to the Las Vegas champions, and lost to the Maryland champions after a free kick was scored by the opposing team in the last 5 minutes. Upon losing that match they were eliminated from the competition, but that doesn’t mean their achievements were any less great. Coach Javier Carrillo says, “This experience exceeded all expectations as we faced the highest level opposition all around the country. I know that this will allow the organization and players to advance in development and we hope to continue these trends in the following season, and hopefully with more of our other teams as well. This experience has allowed the boys to not only grow as players, but as human beings as well.”