Grand County’s Inter-Mountain Youth Soccer U-18 girls capture tournament crown
The Inter-Mountain Youth Soccer Liberty U-18 girls team took first place at the Colorado Shootout Tournament at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City on Oct. 1-3. The tournament featured more than 200 teams from four states competing in age groups from U-10 to U-18.
The Liberty’s first place effort was the first tournament championship for a team from the local soccer club.
In the U-15 girls age group, the Inter-Mountain Snow Cats played three games before being eliminated in the group phase.
U-13 girls take third place in recreational tournament
Across town at the Stenger Soccer Complex in Arvada, the Inter-Moutain White Tigers U-13 girls team played in the Colorado Youth Soccer Cup, the state tournament for recreational teams. The team finished in third place to win the bronze medal, the first time an IMYSA team has taken a medal at the tournament since 2005.
In other action:
The tournament started Friday evening with an 8.30pm kick off under the lights, a new experience for most of the players on the team. Playing a Denver team, the game was very close and it was midway through the second half before Liberty took the lead on a free kick from Hannah Levett and that proved to be the game winner. Saturday morning meant an early start for game two against a team from Boulder, Liberty took the lead when a shot form Lisa Hobbs was deflected into the net and then extended their lead when Hannah Levett took a pass from Gabby Blahnik to fire home. In the second half Hannah added a third before Madeleine Castellion scored the final goal on a pass from Maddie Shipman, to round out a comfortable 4-0 win.
With only an hour and a half’s rest before game three there were quite a few tired muscles not to mention ankles for Janni to tape before another close game, this time against Skyline Bam. Liberty took the lead in the first half on another free kick from Hannah and she then added a second before half time on a pass from Kelly Stefanski. Skyline came out for the second half fired up and pulled the game back to 2-2 before Hannah rounded off her hat trick, scoring the third goal after running through the defence. That win clinched the division and a place in Sunday’s Final against Colorado Storm.
The final game saw Gabby Blahnik score Liberty’s opening goal on a long pass from Hannah, before roles were reversed and Hannah scored from a header following Gabby’s corner. With a 2-0 lead at half time there was no relaxation and Gabby added a third goal for Liberty on a pass from Maddie. Storm then pulled a goal back but Liberty were able to kill the game off with Gabby completing her hat trick after Madeleine won the ball in midfield. With the Final game finishing in a 4-1 win for Liberty they mounted the podium to collect their Gold Medal’s, the first time this has been achieved in a Colorado tournament by a team from the Inter-Mountain Club.
The gold medal was a great tribute to how well the team played in a gruelling competition over three days, the whole defense put in some of their best performances of the season in achieving two shut outs and I would particuarly mention Reed Caldwell who was a rock in the center of defence and played nearly every minute of the four games.
Inter-Mountain U-18 girls soccer team win the club’s first ever tournament gold medal.
It was a big weekend for the Inter-Mounain soccer club’s ladies teams, with the U-15 and U-18 girls playing in the Colorado Shootout Tournament for Competitive teams and the U-13 girls playing in the CYS Cup for Option 1 teams.
At the U-18 level the Inter-Mountain Liberty team, won their group to advance to the Championship game on Sunday morning where they defeated Colorado Storm 4 – 1 to win the Gold Medal.
It was a fantastic performance by the girls to win the first ever tournament gold medal in the Inter-Mountain club’s history. Playing four games in less than 48 hours meant that every player had to contribute and overall it was a complete team performance, scoring 12 goals and conceeding only 3. With games being played on all 24 fields it was a great weekend of soccer and an experience for the girls to remember.
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