Two South Tahoe Futbol Club girls soccer teams won their respective divisions at the Sagebrush Start-Up tournament last weekend in Reno and Sparks, while two others experienced tournament success in Arizona and Northern California.
The STFC Hawks, which has established itself as the top U-15 team in Northern Nevada, moved up an age division and defeated the U-16 Sagebrush Lady Nomads, 1-0, in Sunday’s championship game after Emma Dayberry, a South Tahoe High School freshman, scored the game’s only goal late in the first half.
In Sunday’s semifinal earlier in the day, the Hawks won in a penalty kick shootout over the Roseville Impulse, a Northern California team that came into the tournament as the age bracket’s highest-ranked team. Whittell’s Gigi Stetler scored the critical penalty kick in the shootout. In the opening rounds on Saturday, South Tahoe High freshman Jennifer Valdivia scored one of the team’s two goals in a 2-1 win over the Sagebrush Chili Peppers.
In the U-13 bracket, the STFC Outlaws defeated Spanish Springs 1-0 in the championship. The Outlaws also won in a penalty kick shootout in its semifinal victory, this one against Carson Valley United, and also beat the Sagebrush Patriots 6-1 in Saturday’s opening-round games. In the win over the Patriots, goals were scored by Kamy Farro, Anna White, Nikki Trucco and Jacqui Bravo, who nailed a free kick from 32 yards out. Bravo also scored the final penalty kick against Carson Valley United to clinch the team’s spot in the championship game.
Both teams are coached by Mark Salmon, JV coach at South Tahoe High School, and the Hawks are assisted by Sarah Muskopf. The Hawks also won the Northern California Spring Showcase last month in the Bay Area.
Also this weekend, STFC’s Alliance U-17 team played one of the top teams in the nation at the inaugural Desert Cup Showcase in Phoenix. The team went 1-2 over the weekend but its 2-0 win on Saturday over the Simi Valley Eclipse was the best win for any Northern Nevada club team in its age group in recent memory. In the win over Simi Valley, which is ranked No. 11 in CalSouth, Jordyn Dion, an all-state forward for South Tahoe High School, assisted on the team’s first goal, and Whittell’s Kenya Maltase was involved in the team’s second goal of the day.
On Sunday, the Alliance played Sereno SC of Phoenix, the defending Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) national champions, and battled to a respectable 3-0 loss. Sereno, which is entirely made up of 2015 graduates, already has 12 players committed to Division I schools. The Alliance is comprised of players from South Tahoe, Whittell, Douglas, Carson and Galena high schools, and is coached by Lake Tahoe Community College head coach Chris DeLeon and Jeremy Evans, DeLeon’s assistant at LTCC and head coach for South Tahoe High’s varsity team.
Rounding out the weekend’s results was a performance by the STFC Avalanche U-19 squad. Playing in its first official games of the season, the Avalanche went 1-2 at the Copa Barcelona in Morgan Hill. In the Avalanche’s 1-0 win over the El Cerrito FC Spurs on Sunday, Whittell’s Ali Copsy scored off a cross from Andy Jo Embry. Embry, who attends South Tahoe High, scored the team’s only goal, off a free kick, in a 2-1 loss on Saturday against the Spurs. Goalie Alejandra Orozco provided outstanding skill and leadership, according to Avalanche coach Cheryl Vanos.