Nearly 100 junior footballers with Cayman’s Academy Sports Club took America by storm with their best performance ever in the Schwan’s USA Cup.
The Academy chartered a Cayman Airways jet to send six teams, along with coaches, parents and other volunteers to the youth soccer tournament in Minnesota last week.
The prestigious competition attracts teams from across the U.S., Mexico, Europe and Canada.
The group took three trophies, winning the Boys Under-10s tournament, the Girls U-12 tournament and finishing runner-up in the Boys U-15 tournament.
All the teams excelled, with the U-12 and U-13 boys reaching the quarterfinals and the U-17 boys reaching the semifinals. Some of Academy’s older players also found slots on other teams for the tournament.
Paul Byles of Academy Sports Club said it was a fun and successful trip. With a total of 178 people, including parents, in the Cayman party, he said they made a big impression at the tournament and received a warm welcome.
Academy has been going to the tournament for the last few years but this is the biggest contingent the club has sent. The club was invited to lead the teams out for the opening ceremony parade.
“We have really made our mark at this tournament and the players got compliments from the other coaches about the way they played and behaved,” Byles said. “The quality was very high, particularly once we got through the group stages and into the quarterfinals and beyond. The progress we have made in the tournament over the years is very encouraging, and we are really proud of the players.”
The tournament took place at a 54-field complex in Blaine, Minnesota, and involved more than 1,000 teams in age groups from 7 to 19.
Cayman Academy – Schwan’s USA Cup
- U-10 Boys – Gold Cup champions
- U-15 Boys – Gold Cup runners-up
- U-12 Girls – Silver Cup champions
- U-17 Boys – Gold Cup semifinalists
- U-13 Boys – Gold Cup quarter-finalists
- U-12 Boys – Silver Cup quarter-finalists