2017 US Youth Soccer ODP Boys Thanksgiving Interregional Concludes in Arizona
US Youth Soccer ODP completed its Boys Thanksgiving Interregional on Monday after three days of soccer matches. The tournament featured more than 140 of the nation’s best players who attended training sessions as well as matches against other regional teams.
The annual US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (US Youth Soccer ODP) Boys Thanksgiving Interregional opened Saturday at Grande Sports World in Casa Grande, Ariz.
The three-day event took place Nov. 25-27 and featured teams in the 2003 and 2004 age groups comprised of the top male players in the country.
The event featured more than 140 of the nation’s top players selected from US Youth Soccer State Association and Regional level evaluations.
In each age group, players attended scheduled training sessions and also competed in matches against each of the other regional teams.
The US Youth Soccer ODP Boys Thanksgiving Interregional annually attracts numerous college coaches, as well as several U.S. Soccer scouts. The talent on display from each team allows coaches and scouts to evaluate players in an environment similar to what they will face at the next level of play.
Highlights from Day 1:
2003s | East 0-3 West
The 2003 West Region opened up the event with a 3-0 win over the East. Kevin Lomeli, Nicolas Bellini and Reise Corpuz each contributed toward the victory with their goals.
2003s | Midwest 1-3 South
The 2003 South Region came out on top of the Midwest Region with a 3-1 victory. The first goal of the match came in the 34th minute thanks to a South Region goal from Marco Romero.
Francisco Lopez gained the equalizer for the Midwest with a goal in the fourth minute of the second half, but one minute later, the South stole the lead right back as Desian Rodriguez put the ball in the back of the net. Romero earned some breathing room for the South, and it was also the final goal of the match as he scored in the 54th minute.
2004s | Midwest 2-3 South
In the 2004 age group, a matchup between the Midwest Region and the South Region led to a 3-2 win for the South. Matt Webb and Forrest Wells made it a 2-0 game for the South in the first half. However, in the first few minutes of the second half, the Midwest tied the game after Tyler Stinnett and Alan Alcala each netted a goal. The match remained tied for the majority of the second half, but Lucas Rizzo earned the game winner for the South with a goal in the 63rd minute.
2004s | East 2-1 West
The 2004 East Region defeated the West, 2-1 in the opening day of the event. Robin Pestka got the East on the board first with his 19th-minute goal. While the West tied the game up with a goal from Joshua Martinez in the 44th minute, it was Pestka who claimed the game winner after scoring in the 60th minute.
Highlights from Day 2:
2003s | South 0-1 West
In the 2003 age group, the West Region earned its second victory with a 1-0 win over the South Region. The West Region’s Nicolas Bellini put the ball in the back of the net in the 21st minute, making the goal his second of the event.
2003s | Midwest 2-3 East
The 2003 East Region overcame the Midwest with its 3-2 victory on Sunday. The East earned the win with the help of a goal from Chance Rose as well as two from Malcolm Brickhouse. Despite goals from Samuel Abreu and Alexandru Diac, the Midwest could not catch up before the final whistle.
2004s | Midwest 2-0 East
In the 2004 age group, the Midwest Region defeated the East, 2-0. After a scoreless first half, Connor Carruth got the Midwest on the board in the 47th minute, and Samuel Moore sealed the win as he also netted a goal.
2004s | South 0-5 West
The West Region bounced back from a close loss on Saturday to earn a big win against the South on Sunday.
Chadwick Booth opened up the scoring early with a goal in the fourth minute, and three minutes later, Blake Bernal scored again for the West.
Booth also earned his second goal of the game later in the first half. Just as the game wrapped up, Logan Capito and Joshua Martinez each added a goal to complete the final score.
After the second day of play, each team in the 2004 age group has one win and one loss on its record.
Highlights from Day 3:
2003s | East 2-0 South
The 2003 East Region picked up a 2-0 win over the South to conclude the event. After the South allowed an own goal in the 23rd minute, the East’s Malcom Brickhouse was able to tally his third goal of the weekend as he put the East ahead, 2-0 in the 32nd minute.
2003s | Midwest 0-1 West
The West Region continued its unbeaten streak by defeating the Midwest, 1-0. All it took was a goal from Kevin Lomeli in the 14th minute for the West to claim the victory. The goal was Lomeli’s second of the weekend as he also scored in the West’s win on Saturday.
2004s | East 7-0 South
In the 2004 age group, the East finished the weekend strong with a significant win against the South Region. After the first two goals were scored in the eighth and ninth minutes of the match, the East went on a scoring spree between the 21st and 29th minutes. Nicholas Bernieri earned a hat trick for the day, while Beckett Wenger added two goals. Robin Pestka and James Baculima also added a goal each.
2004s | Midwest 1-1 West
The West and the Midwest Regions battled to a 1-1 draw on Monday. Alan Alcala put the Midwest on the board in the 13th minute, and the West was able to equalize the match with a late goal from Blake Bernal. Alcala and Bernal each tallied two goals for the weekend.
US Youth Soccer ODP is the original Olympic development program.
With programs in all 55 US Youth Soccer State Associations, it is available to any player. US Youth Soccer ODP is the only elite player development program that can claim members of Major League Soccer and the National Women’s Soccer League, as well as the majority of current and past national and youth national team members, as alumni.
To learn more, visit www.usyouthsoccer.org/programs/OlympicDevelopmentProgram.
Press release and photo credit: US Youth Soccer