Thousands of soccer players and spectators will dribble into Redmond’s 60 Acres Soccer Complex today through June 25 at the U.S. Youth Soccer Region IV (West) Championships. The event is part of the U.S. Youth Soccer National Championship Series, the country’s oldest and most prestigious national youth soccer tournament.
Round-robin matches will take place June 19-21, followed by the quarterfinals on June 23, semifinals on June 24 and finals on June 25. (Winners are listed at the end of this story.)
The championships are expected to draw more than 4,000 players and an estimated 14,000 spectators.
According to the City of Redmond’s Twitter page, drivers should expect congestion on State Route 202 (Redmond-Woodinville Road Northeast) and Willows Road for 6:30 a.m. team and spectator arrivals.
Steven Nelson, director of marketing and communications for U.S. Youth Soccer, stepped into the Redmond/Seattle area for the first time and is enjoying the terrain.
“We’re really excited about it. It’s just great, the tournament’s been awesome so far,” he said on Monday. “Everyone’s been very hospitable, the fields are nice, the weather’s holding up — so that’s always a good thing.”
Nelson said the 60 Acres atmosphere has been stellar. As a soccer player growing up, he said the weather has been perfect.
“(It’s a) little bit slick on the field, being able to slide around and have a good time,” he added.
“We are excited to welcome more than 18,000 people from 14 states for the U.S. Youth Soccer Region IV Championships,” said Jill Smith, City of Redmond economic development manager, last summer when U.S. Youth Soccer announced the venue. “Youth sports tournaments are a big part of tourism in Redmond. They give us a chance to share our beautiful park system with visitors, while filling our hotels and restaurants and bringing new customers to Redmond businesses.”
The U.S. Youth Soccer Region IV Championships consist of U.S. Youth Soccer state champions from 14 state associations, including the host Washington Youth Soccer, U.S. Youth Soccer Far West Regional League Premier Division champions, as well as drawn wildcard entries. Following individual state championship tournaments, the Regional Championships are the second leg of the U.S. Youth Soccer National Championship Series.
The tournament has attracted about 225 boys and girls teams, ages 13 and Under through 19/20 and Under, from the 14 Western U.S. Youth Soccer State Associations that make up U.S. Youth Soccer Region IV (Alaska, Arizona, California North, California South, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming).
“It is always exciting to begin planning future U.S. Youth Soccer Regional Championships, and part of that initial planning is choosing the best possible host city for each of our four Regional Championships,” said Tom Mendoth, the Region IV Championships chair. “Washington was a great host for the 2004 U.S. Youth Soccer Region IV Championships, and we look forward to working with them again in 2017 for an even better tournament.”
Regional winners of the 13 and Under through 19/20 and Under brackets earn a berth to the 2017 U.S. Youth Soccer National Championships in Frisco, Texas.
2017 US Youth Soccer Region IV (West) Champions:
13U Girls San Diego Surf CA-S
13U Boys Heat FC 04 ET NV
14U Girls LVPSA 03 Red NV
14U Boys CDA Slammers FC HB 03 Godinez Black CA-S
15U Girls La Roca PO 02 UT
15U Girls # Real Colorado 02 Olympico CO
15U Boys Tuzos Academy 02 AZ
16U Girls Celtic FC Premier SA UT
16U Boys WCFC Armour 2001 CA-S
17U Girls Celtic FC UT
17U Boys Santa Clara Sporting 00 Green CA-N
18U Girls Arsenal Colorado Academy 99 CO
18U Boys West Coast 99 Wyss CA-S
19/20U Girls Eastside FC 98 Red WA