San Diego Surf 2004 Girls Crowned US Youth Soccer National Champions
Tens of thousands of kids shared the dream of being crowned national champions — and, after a year-long journey to the US Youth Soccer National Championships, one very special youth soccer team from Southern California earned the honor of being crowned the very best 2004 Girls team in the USA.
The National Championships featured Boys and Girls youth soccer teams from U13 through U19/20. More than 10,000 teams from 55 US Youth Soccer State Associations start in the competition which culminated in the crowning of the national champions last week in Texas.
Youth Soccer News: National Youth Soccer Champions were crowned last weekend at the 2017 US Youth Soccer National Championships held at the Toyota Soccer Center in Frisco, Texas.
To earn the title of USYS National Champion, a team must obviously have talent — but more than just talent, to be real champions takes hard work, dedication, and the ability to see the big picture as it unfolds on the soccer field. It takes great coaching — which instills confidence to make the right decisions and the ability to recover from mistakes quickly. To become the National Champions takes players committed to working together on and off the field — and that is exactly what the San Diego Surf SC team clearly demonstrated in their undefeated run this year in the US Youth Soccer National Championships.
Coached by Paul Dolinsky, the San Diego Surf SC 2004 Girls team knew that it would take more than just winning on the field to become National Champions. To rise to this challenge would take dedication every day — and these elite young women were motivated to be their best and worked together to become a well-connected team committed to their goal.
2017 US Youth Soccer National Champions 13UG Results
|Tue Jul 25||San Diego Surf (CA-S) (RIV-C)||8–0||SDFC Yellow (NJ) (RI-C)|
|Wed Jul 26||San Diego Surf (CA-S) (RIV-C)||4–0||SPORTING Blue Valley (KS) (RII-C)|
|Thu Jul 27||Lonestar 04G RED (TX-S) (RIII-C)||1–1||San Diego Surf (CA-S) (RIV-C)|
13U Girls National Championship
|Sat Jul 29||San Diego Surf (CA-S) (RIV-C)||3–1||SDFC Yellow (NJ) (RI-C)||Final|
Surf SC coach Dolinsky and assistant coach Danny Tonks said they were very proud of his players all season and thrilled that they earned the opportunity to represent their club, Cal South and Region IV at the National Championships this year in Frisco.
“Winning was the culmination of hard work all season.”
“It’s impressive. This is the goal in the beginning of every year and to accomplish it is a tribute to all the hours spent on the field,” said Dolinsky.
“Everything comes full circle and to see the girls’ faces and their pride of accomplishment — this is why we do this,” said Dolinsky. “That was an incredible feeling.”
The girls said it best, “Hard work pays off.”
When the whistle blows, this team knows they have to be committed to each other, but these girls went far above and beyond — they all believed in our mission and received the ultimate reward at the end of the day,” Dolinsky who has coached talented youth soccer players at Surf SC for several years.
“For me, I feel I have accomplished the ultimate as a youth soccer coach,” said Dolinsky who won national league championships as a youth player in Holland. “To have your team crowned the best in the country is amazing. The New Jersey team played very well.”
“It’s extra special to win the USYS National Championship this year, as this year was the girls’ only opportunity,” said Dolinsky. “Last year, the tournament ended at the Region IV level, and next year the team will be playing in U.S Soccer’s Girls Development Academy and will not be able to compete in this event. We had one shot, and the girls came through in a big way!”
“There are many youth soccer players who also work hard — as much as hard work is critical, luck is also important — the ball bounced the right way for us. And, as I always tell my players, it is important to create your own luck,” said Dolinsky.
There is no predictability in soccer — that is one of the reasons the game is so universally revered and loved — and, yes, luck does help.
Surf SC is well recognized for playing an attractive, attacking-minded possession-oriented style of soccer. The focus is on creating opportunities to score and empower players with the ability to make good decisions on the field. “There is a lot of responsibility for decision making placed on the kids,” said Dolinsky. “At Surf SC, we play a style of soccer that is clearly purposeful possession and it is up to the players to know what to do to win a challenge — and a game.”
Surf SC is one of the most elite youth soccer clubs in America with an international reputation for elite player development. A full U.S. Soccer Development Academy, Surf SC has development many youth soccer players who have received the call up to U.S. Soccer Youth National Team pools.
“Coaching elite youth soccer players at Surf SC in San Diego is great,” said Dolinsky. “Our fields are professionally maintained and are gorgeous, our people are great and we can play soccer 12 months a year. What could be better?”
This is Surf SC’s 10th victory celebrating a National Championship — it is a stunning feat to win a few but to claim ten national championship titles is very rare.
The Surf SC 2004 Girls Roster includes: Paige Buchner, Acacia Edwards, Ella Giannola, Chole Green, Sophine Kevorkian, Allison Luo, Presley McDonald, Alexandra Mohr, Emma Pidding, Kailyn Pitt, Nona Reason, Abby Succi, Maggie Taitano, Cosette Thistle, Preslea Wilson, and Maura Yumul.
Many youth soccer players — even some of the best players in the USA who go on to become professionals — never earn one championship. Dolinsky, who thrived on the challenge and is already looking forward to next season, still finds it hard to describe the feeling the moment his team won.
“I still do not have words to describe how it felt to win – but this made me hungry to do it again,” said Dolinsky.
Top Photo Credit: Cal South / US Youth Soccer