The big news in February was the U19 Boys capturing the President's Cup title in Tukwila, capping a tournament performance in which the team allowed just one goal throughout the competition. In RCL action, several teams continue to excel as they head into the final month of play. Teams also took part in a pair of other events elsewhere.
The Shadow advanced to the championship game courtesy of a narrow 1-0 victory over WPFC in the semifinals. The second half goal came off a five-pass combination that led to a through ball for Jackson Moore, who then rounded a defender and cut it back for JD Hauenstein for a simple finish into the goal. The team had four or five excellent scoring chances throughout the game going forward, but had to settle with another outstanding defensive effort making the single goal enough.
"Our team defense was solid against a team who was very athletic and does very well in the air. In the end, one goal was enough to get us into the final," said coach Paul Johnson.
Facing a side Harbor Premier side that finished second to the Shadow in group play, the Shadow avoided the vengeance bid. Some great moments in build-up play created three solid chances during the course of the game, but the Shadow were unable finish them off. In the 85th minute, however, Hauenstein found himself one-on-one inside the penalty area and fired a shot that struck a defender's extended hand. Hauenstein converted the ensuing penalty and the defense held strong to see out the remaining time.
"This was the best way to finish off a great season," said Johnson. "The boys worked so hard in training and throughout the season and they were rewarded with winning the League and the Cup. Our overall record was 25-3-6, which was a huge improvement from last year. We gave up one goal throughout the President's Cup against some very competitive teams, which was outstanding.
"The best part is every player on our roster of 19 contributed, which just makes it all the more special. I am so proud to see their commitment and dedication to our club's style of play pay off and it really is a joy to watch when it all comes together. I'm excited to see what the future holds for these boys in and outside of soccer. It really was a great group to work with, and I am so happy for them."
Meanwhile, the President's Cup run came to a close in the semifinals for the U17s. As a wild card, the B98-A Shadow were paired up against their group-winner Blackhills FC, who they tied 1-1 in group play, in the quarterfinals. The Shadow posted a road 2-1 victory to earn their trip to the Starfire Complex the following week. Crossfire Premier, however, knocked the Shadow boys out with a 3-0 result in the semifinal contest.
Pictured: Charlie Reiger, Kandon Simon, Riley McClurkin, Michael McCleod have played with Shadow since U12 celebrate with Paul Johnson.
RCL ROUND-UP :: GIRLS
The Shadow G97-A side remains unbeaten in the U19 Division 1 RCL table, going 2-0-1 in February. The ladies picked up a pair of good results on the road late in the month with a 2-1 victory over FWFC and a 2-2 draw against NWN. They returned home to close out the month, topping FC Alliance 1-0 to sit third just over the midway point of the campaign. Meanwhile, the the G97-B side is dominating in the Division 3 league after three big victories in February has them atop the table. They opened with a 4-1 home win against Snohomish United the first week and two weeks later blanked visiting PacNW 4-0. They closed out the month with an 8-1 win on the road against Crossfire Yakima.
The G98-A girls picked up on their perfect five-game start to the season with another pair of victories in early February action in the U17 RCL Division 1 league, but a busy slate also saw them suffer their first loss and play to a pair of draws, allowing Three Rivers to pull even with three games to go. In the opening week of the month, the Shadow ladies downed visiting FWFC 3-1 before hitting the road the next day to face Seattle United for a 4-0 victory. A road trip spoiled Valentines weekend with the squad playing to a 2-2 draw at Three Rivers and dropping their first game of the season, 2-0, at PacNW, which is only three points back heading into March. A 2-0 home win against Crossfire Premier and a 1-1 draw against visiting Washington Rush put the side back on track the following week before they got a break to close out the month.
The G99-A side is making the U16 RCL Division 2 league a two-team race with Eastside FC, going 4-2-0 in February to remain within four points of the leaders. They kicked off the month with their second loss of the campaign, falling 3-1 at Crossfire Premier, but rebounded with a 1-0 road win the following day at WPFC to start a three-game win streak that saw them post home wins two weeks later against Crossfire Premier, 2-0, and FWFC, 8-0. Seattle United spoiled the run with a 1-0 win against the visiting Shadow, who bounced back to close out the month with a 3-0 win at Kitsap Alliance the next day. The G99-B squad is also in a two-team race atop the Division 4 table, sitting one point back of Kent United after a perfect 3-0-0 month. They edged visiting FC Alliance 3-2 in the opening week of February and two weeks later added another home win with a 3-1 result against PacNW. A 5-1 home win against Snohomish United capped the month off.
A three-game unbeaten streak going into February was a good sign for the G00-A squad in the U15 RCL Division 1 league, but the Shadow ladies unfortunately came out on the wrong side of three tight contests in February. They played to a 1-1 draw on the road late in the month against current second-place side PacNW and then fell in a narrow 1-0 defeat at Washington Rush (currently third) the following day. A close 1-0 loss at home versus Eastside FC closed out the month. The G00-B side in the Division 3 league are mid-table after splitting for the month. They opened things up with a 2-0 home win against Three Rivers, but were handed losses on the road two weeks later by PacNW, 2-1, and Whatcom FC, 2-0. They finished up the month with a 1-0 win against Eastside FC.
The Winter U14 Division 1 RCL league was tough in February for the G01-A squad, who went 1-2-0 for the month. It started with a narrow 2-1 loss at home against leaders PacNW. Then, after two weeks off, they split at home to close the month, downing WPFC 4-0 and falling 1-0 to Crossfire Premier. In the Division 3 U14 Winter league, the G01-B Shadow girls fell 4-0 against PacNW to open the month, tied visiting Harbor Premier 0-0, and then dropped a 4-2 result at home against Crossfire Premier, leaving them mid-table.
After opening the U13 Winter RCL Division 2 league up with a win on the final day of January, the G02-A side kept things going in February with a win and a draw. They downed visiting WPFC 4-0 and closed then capped the month off with a 2-2 home draw against Seattle United. In the Division 5 league, the Shadow played to a draw in their lone game, a 3-3 result at home versus FC Alliance.
The G03-A girls went unbeaten for February in the U12 Winter RCL Division 3 league. They opened it up with a 2-1 win the first week at home against RVS and played to a draw at home, 1-1, against Three Rivers two weeks later. They closed out the month with another win at home, downing Kitsap Alliance 1-0 to sit third in the table with one game left. It was an up-and-down month for the G03-B girls in Division 4, where they had split results against the better teams. They fell 2-0 on the road against league-leading Crossfire Premier before rebounding for a scoreless draw at home against the same side and a 1-0 road win over second-place Seattle United. The final weekend saw two losses at home, though, to Washington Rush, 2-0, and Seattle United, 3-1.
RCL ROUND-UP :: BOYS
The B01-A boys opened up their winter RCL Division 1 campaign with a pair of good results, earning a 3-1 victory against PacNW and a 1-1 draw versus FC Alliance on back-to-back days at home, but a road trip two weeks later proved to be a setback as they fell 3-1 to Crossfire Yakima and 8-0 to WPFC. With a loss to open the season in January, the B01-B side went on a roll in February in Division 4. They kicked it off with back-to-back 2-0 road wins against Blackhills FC and Snohomish United. They returned to the road the following week and kept things going with another pair of shutout wins, edging Harbor Premier 1-0 and blanking WPFC 2-0 to close out the month and move them into third, two points back of the leader Crossfire Premier, which has wrapped up its slate.
After a 2-0-1 start in January, things slipped a bit for the B02-A side in RCL Winter U13 Division 2. They fell in a 3-4 contest at home to Three Rivers to open the month before rebounding two weeks later with a 5-1 home win against FC Alliance. Previously winless Crossfire Premier, however, surprised the boys at DMC in the final game of the month, handing the Shadow a surprising 1-0 defeat. The team sits fourth, three back of finished-up leaders NWN and two back of the two Eastside FC teams, one of which they face in their season finale Sunday at Plantes Ferry.
After dropping their opener in late January, the B03-A side has gone 2-2-0 in the RCL U12 Winter Division 2 league. They were edged out on the road, 1-0, at Snohomish United but rebounded on Valentines Day the next day with a 1-0 win at Three Rivers. Two weeks later they closed out the month on the road again, posting a 2-1 win at Seattle United before falling 6-2 to Washington Rush.
Blue Mountain Exchange
The Shadow represented well in Pasco. Dave Ellis' girls (pictured, left) captured the U10 title without allowing a goal in the event and a battle of Shadow sides in the GU11 bracket saw Chris Windham's girls prevail against Abbas Faridnia's side in the championship game.
On the boys side, Kevin Houston's group (pictured, right) captured the BU11 championship and Jey Vierra's BU14 Select team finished second.
SC Del Sol WCDA College Showcase
The President's Day holiday weekend featured a pair of strong performances on the road at the SC Del Sol WCDA College Showcase in Arizona. The BU14s brought home the championship, opening with a draw against Rio Rapids and running off wins against Arsenal Colorado, Colorado Storm and Lyons Township. The BU15s fell in their opener against local side Tuscon Soccer Academy but rebounded to finish third with wins over FC Portland, Colorado Storm and Colorado Edge. The U14s were led by Ray Serrano (10 goals) and Eric Shaporda (2 goals) as well as centerback Mundo Curiel, who stood strong playing every minute of the event. Highlighting the U14 performance was Camden VerStrate, who scored in every game, and Jaymon Manzi, who posted some shutout performances in his time in goal. More [+]