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FRISCO, Texas (July 24, 2018) – Six North Texas Soccer teams combined for two wins, one draw and three losses on the opening day of play at the 2018 US Youth Soccer National Championships held at Toyota Soccer Center in Frisco Texas.
13-Under Girls Liverpool 05 Elite, 14-Under Girls FC Dallas 04 Blue, 15-Under Girls Liverpool 03 Elite and 16-Under Girls Sparta FC 02 Elite all earned their respective spots in the National Championships by claiming US Youth Soccer Southern Regional Championships titles last month, while defending National Champions Solar 02 Stricker reserved the right to defend its national title by winning the 2017-18 US Youth Soccer National League White title in December. 2018 North Texas Soccer State Cup finalists in the 19-Under Girls age group, Invictus SC 99 rounds out the field of North Texas teams .
Group play will take place July 24-26, while semifinals in the 14-18 Under age groups and finals in the 13-Under and 19-Under age groups will occur July 28. The remaining champions will be crowned July 29. Boys and girls teams in multiple age groups earn their way by competing against the top teams in their state and region. US Youth Soccer State Champions and selected wildcard teams are eligible to compete in one of four US Youth Soccer Regional Championships. The champions in the 13U through 19/20U age groups from each regional event will converge in the finals with the National League teams.
After only surrendering one goal throughout the Southern Regional Championships, Liverpool 05 Elite continued its strong play on the defensive end in a 0-0 draw against Pipeline Pre-Academy (MD) in each team’s National Championships debut. Liverpool will take on Midwest champ KHA 05 Red (KY) tomorrow. KHA fell to Far West champion San Diego Surf 05 (CA-S) 5-1 on day one of the National Championships.
FC Dallas Blue moved to the top of Group B after a 1-0 win over Far West champions Arsenal FC (CA-S). After a scoreless first half, FC Dallas Blue forward Colleen Gilliland broke the scoreless stalemate in the 50th minute after she headed home a cross that was initially flicked up in the air. Next up for FC Dallas will be a match against National League Red champions Nationals Union 04 Black (MI), which lost 1-0 to Michigan Jaguars 04 Green (MI) to open the National Championships.
Liverpool 03 Elite found themselves in a hole quickly in its first National Championships match after National League Blue runner-up GPS FC Bayern (OR) found the back of the net just two minutes into the match. Liverpool’s Amanda Walsh would respond just eight minutes later as the game was knotted 1-1 heading into halftime. GPS FC scored for a second time in the 51st minute, but Liverpool was unable to find a second equalizer, and the match ended 2-1. Liverpool will face off against National League Red champions LVPSA 03 Red (NV) tomorrow. LVPSA drew its first match 2-2 vs Cleveland FC 03 (OH-N)
Sparta FC 02 Elite got off to a rough start at the National Champions after falling 4-0 to National League Black champion La Roca FD 02 (UT). Sparta will look to get back on track tomorrow against Midwest champion North Shore United 02 Blue (WI), which was on the wrong end of a 5-0 match against Legends FC 02 (CA-S).
Defending National Champions Solar 02 Stricker got its title defense off on a strong note as it avenged its only National League loss with a 2-1 win over Club Ohio Green (OH-S). Johnathan Sauceda began the scoring in the 19th minute after volleying in a point blank cross from 2017 National Championships Golden Ball winner Riley O’Donnell. Captain Harvey Castro would double Solar’s lead in the 33rd minute after burying a pass from Richard Garcia into the side netting. Solar will hope to get even closer to securing a semifinals spot tomorrow in a match against National League Black champions Washington Premier 2002 Black (WA).
Invictus FC fell to Midwest champion NSA Shock (IL) 3-0 to open the National Championships. Invictus will look to rebound on the second day of play, when they play Far West champion Utah FC 99 Black (UT), which drew South champion AFC Lightning 99 Elite (GA) on the first day of play.