We are as good as anyone in USYS.
The 2021 National Championship event held in Sarasota Florida was incredible. It was really well put together and felt special for everyone. After 17hrs of driving in the van, Jack, Garret, and I got to Florida and checked in. The USYS head office issued us towels and credentials and from there began the prep for game day for the first ever, Pittsburgh Hotspurs girls chase for a National title.
Game 1 vs Total Futbol Academy TFA G05 Elite (OH-S): We played well after a slow start that was all TFA end up needing. It was a game of trying to take your chances, and at this level, it’s about taking them when they come. In the 2nd half we changed our shape and were excellent. Really dominated the second half just couldn’t find the back of the net. [Video stream]
Game 2 vs Broomfield Soccer Club Blast 2005 Girls Prestige (CO): We felt was the best team on our group. After starting a little slow again, we played well — again particularly in the 2nd half. Broomfield scored a great goal and were excellent on the counter with some dominant forwards and full backs.
As the game went on we began to dominate and scored after a well deserved penalty, our captain Ava Weleski got taken down. To tie this game was a huge credit to the girls mentality and never say die mindset. We put what would be the game winner in the last minute, only to have it called back for a foul and ended in a draw.
Game 3 vs Collierville SA 05 Lady Lobos Rush Premier (TN): Win and we are in.
Lobos had beat TFA and we knew we could beat them. We were confident going into the game but started off with a picked off back pass to trail 1-0 from early on. Everything was clicking and we played really well but the soccer gods were not with us. A square pass was picked off and our centerback brought Lobos down for a penalty. Dang. 2-0.
Half time comes and we knew we needed some momentum. We decided to press and commit to it. We got everyone in the opponent’s half and were relentless. We got ourselves back in the game at 2-1 and were flying! But, sadly our momentum was crushed with a Wonder Girl after a goalkeeper clearance, crushing the ball from 35 yards to take it to 3-2. The girls didn’t give up but the momentum was stopped. A consolation got us to 3-2, but not enough…..gutted.
Post game we gathered as a group at the hotel for a chat. We talked about the week and how much it did for us — we came tighter as a team more than ever before. The girls had ice baths, stretching and pool recovery sessions altogether. The reflection on it all brought out the fact we had come so far as a relative nobody. It was amazing. The girls were asked many questions on this journey and they answered them, but the answers ran out eventually. What was clear was this experience puts the 2005G Blue in a better position moving forward.
We were and are as good as anyone in USYS. Onto the next year.
Photos courtesy of our amazing parents. With majority of the credit to Tammy Ornowski!