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National League Girls Preview: Dallas Kicks 00

November 29, 2016 04:33 PM

With the opening weekend of the US Youth Soccer National League around the corner, we preview all of the North Texas Soccer teams competing in the competition.

Dallas Kicks SC 00

Age Group: Under-17 Girls

The Breakdown

The Dallas Kicks have gathered their fair share of accolades, which include three US Youth Soccer North Texas State Cup and Southern Regional Premier League (SRPL) West titles, a pair of US Youth Soccer Region III Championships and a National League Blue title. A US Youth Soccer National Championship would round of the collection nicely, but it has so far eluded the up-and-coming club, with a 2015 finals appearance being the closest the Kicks have come. Dallas Kicks will look to return to the National Championships for a fourth straight time by winning its second National League title. Opposing defenses will have to keep tabs on Samantha Meza and Jaida Thomas, who are both more than capable of finding the back of the net in quick succession. Thomas has been a leading scorer in National League seasons in addition to both the Region III and National Championships, while Meza helped the Under-15 USWNT win the 2016 CONCACAF U-15 Girls’ Championships while scoring six goals and being named to the CONCACAF All-Star team.

Player Accolades

North Texas ODP: Nichole Alvarez, Adrienne Arriaga, Victoria Cruz, Michelle Gonzalez, Carmen Herndon, Alliyah Marquez, Jordan Martinez, Makenna McGraw, Jordan Michie, Belerica Oquendo, Brennan Reuland, Mackenzie Stricklin, Jaida Thomas, Emilie Torres, Emily Tovar

Region III ODP: Alliyah Marquez, Jordan Martinez, Makenna McGraw, Emilie Torres, Emily Tovar

Samantha Meza: U-16 USWNT Pool, 2x National Championships Best XI

Jaida Thomas: 2015 National Championships Golden Ball, 3x National Championships Best XI, 2015-16 National League Top Scorer, 2015 National Championships Top Scorer, 2x Region III Champs Top Scorer

The Opponents

FC Pride 00 Elite (IN)

The opening match between FC Pride and the Dallas Kicks is a battle of the two teams in the Red Division with the most National League success in previous seasons. FC Pride has twice used the National League to qualify to the National Championships – including a 2015-16 National League Red title and a 2014-15 Runner up finish in the Blue Division, which the Dallas Kicks won. Only one of the two sides can qualify to Nationals via the National League, and a winner in the first match would have to be considered an early favorite in the Red Division.

LMSC Storm (PA-E)

LMSC Storm will make its National League debut this season and will look be the second straight Lower Merion team to qualify to the National Championships after their male counterparts, LMSC Sabertooth Rats, qualified to the 2016 National Championships. LMSC Storm won the 2016 US Youth Soccer Eastern Pennsylvania State Cup and placed fourth in the 2016 US Youth Soccer Eastern Regional League Elite Blue Division.

Premier Strikers (MD)

The Kicks will take on a second consecutive Region I team when they take on Premier Strikers on day three. This marks the second season in the National League for Premier Strikers, and the Maryland side will look to improve on an eighth place finish in the 2014-15 Red Division. Premier Strikers have won two straight US Youth Soccer Maryland State Cup titles and have appeared in consecutive US Youth Soccer Region I Championship Semifinals.

Scottsdale Blackhawks Taylor (AZ)

Like Premier Strikers, Scottsdale Blackhawks will make their second appearance in the National League and will hope to improve on the 2014-15 season. Scottsdale placed sixth in the 2014-15 Blue Division, but was one only two teams to draw with Dallas Kicks. Scottsdale Blackhawks have claimed two US Youth Soccer Arizona State Cup titles and reached the 2016 US Youth Soccer Region IV Championships Semifinals.

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