The IDF U14 team came away victorious in their division with a 3-0 record in the AC Sandhills Summer Starter Tournament in Southern Pines, NC during Mother’s Day weekend, 2017. They started the tournament early Saturday morning with a hard-fought 2-0 win against the host team, the ACS Orange. The afternoon game was a lot easier with a 14-0 whitewash against an outmatched Richmond Revolution team.

Goalkeeper Drew makes a save for IDF. Photo courtesy of S. Villiers

As winners of their bracket and superior goal difference, IDF booked their ticket directly to the final on Sunday afternoon, whereas TFC 03 Alliance and CSA Charlotte Gazelle had to duke it out in a Sunday morning semi-final, which TFCA eventually won comfortably.

Heri dribbles past a defender against TFCA. Photo courtesy of S. Villiers

The final was another tense, physical affair with IDF scoring two first half goals from Heri and Curtis.  After the break, TFCA managed to get one back after a scramble in the six yard box, resulting in a TFC player toe-poking one into the IDF goal. IDF managed to hold on for the rest of the game and came away victorious by a 2-1 margin to cap off a hugely successful weekend for the club in Southern Pines.  IDF possession style soccer along with their ability to press and make a physically superior opponent in TFCA uncomfortable was the key to winning the finals.

Celebration after scoring the goal winner in the finals. Photo courtesy of S. Villiers

In recapping the weekend, Head Coach Andre Fortune said “the athleticism of the opponent in the final game was a proper test to IDF philosophy of insisting that players need to learn the game and rely on athleticism.  And judging from the ebb and flow of the game and the results we seem to be getting it right.  Congrats to all of the players, especially Marshall and Patrick who I think provided a glimpse into the type of players they can become if they continue working hard.  They were well supported by the likes of Matt, Thabo, and Curtis.”