Over the weekend of June 8th and 9th 10 of the NSL’s top teams from 12U boys and girls competed in the second NSL Champions Cup at Forekicks Taunton. The girls were placed into a group of 4 with the boys in 2 groups of 3. Saturday saw the teams play 2 games with the boys having a cross over game on the Sunday and the girls competing all group games.
Saturday, June 8th
FC Blazers were setting the pace with 2 wins on the first day against two strong teams from Harvest and Legacy to end the day with 6 points. Sevilla meanwhile had managed to get 2 wins from 2 games in the other group with 4-3 thrillers against both Mach 1 FC and Harvest. East Bay lost by the odd goal to Legacy Boys then played a very strong Mach 1 boys team in their second game. With everything to play for on the second day FC Blazers were looking a lock for the final against Sevilla FC based on tie-breakers but in the 3rd placed game it was going to be who might face Legacy between Harvest and Mach 1 FC.
In the girl’s group, Newton Girls were looking very strong scoring 12 goals across both games but Legacy and St Michael were both strong teams with everything to play for and Mach 1 had the chance to cause an upset. St Michaels lost a close match to Legacy by the odd goal with the Legacy keeper stopping everything heading towards her goal!
Sunday, June 9th
For the business end of the tournament, we had some top games to look forward to. St Michaels girls needed to beat Newton Girls for a chance to play them in the final and hope that Legacy lost. A great game saw St Michaels go down to a very close 2-1 defeat meaning the final would be Legacy against Newton and the chance for revenge. In the girls 3rd placed game Mach 1 matched up with St Michaels for an entertaining 4-2 win for the team from the south shore and a 3rd place finish for St Michaels. In the final, after full time the game was tied at 1-1 with a penalty shoot out. The Legacy goalkeeper had already faced a penalty in regular time saving the first kick, then the rebound but not the 3rd follow up but could she prevail this time. With Newton Girls missing 3 penalties and Legacy only 1 before making it 3-1 with 1 kick left Legacy were declared Champions! Great final and a great game by all.
In the Boys group, Legacy pride played a great game against Sevilla and won out by 3-2 which meant they would play Mach 1FC in the 3rd placed final and Sevilla heading to the final to face the FC Blazers powerhouse team. East Bay Blazers put in a great performance all weekend with a very young team and made a lot of friends with their sportsmanship and commitment to the games. They finished at the bottom of the group but seemed to be everyone’s second favorite team and looking forward to the fall season with more experience. Harvest unfortunately unable to play their 3rd game meant that Mach 1 FC went into the 3rd placed game to play against Legacy. The boys Legacy program closed out a great weekend for the club with a 1-0 win in the final and a 3rd placed finish. In the final, the 2 top teams of Sevilla and FC Blazers matched up for what on paper looked like a great game. It was maybe one game too far for Sevilla FC who were unable to recover from an early sending off of one of their players and FC Blazers were able to take advantage of the extra player to produce some of their best soccer and win the final.
The NSL would like to thank all the players, coaches, parents and clubs who participated in this annual event and especially the officials who provided the teams with the chance to play and love the game.
See you all next year!