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(10/27/2021) Great Lakes Conference recap


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (Oct. 27, 2021) — Nine division champions were crowned over the past two weeks of action in the Fall 2021 season of the US Youth Soccer Great Lakes Conference. The reward for performances in the Fall 2021 season is retaining spots in Premier I or getting promoted from Premier II to the top tier for the Spring 2022 season.

Some notes from the weekend’s Team vs. Team action:

  • AFFC 2009 Black (PA-W) clinched a spot in Premier I by winning the 13U Boys Premier Blue Division with a game to spare, thanks to a 2-0 win over Century Boys 2009 Gold (PA-W).
  • Club Ohio 09G National (OH) secured promotion to Premier I thanks to its first-place finish in 13U Girls Premier White. Its 2-0 win over Hotspurs North 2009G Xplosion (PA-W) gave it an unassailable lead atop the standings, with GTFC Impact Girls 09 Premier (OH) joining them in Premier I thanks to their 2-2 draw with Hotspurs North.
  • Despite losing its final game of the season, Indy Premier SC 08B Elite I (IN) was guaranteed a first-place finish in 14U Boys Premier II Blue thanks to BSA B08 Metro/Celtic (OH) dropping points against KHA Bluegrass B08 (KY). The tie between BSA Celtic and KHA Bluegrass also means that KHA Bluegrass still has an opportunity to leapfrog BSA Celtic into second place in the final weeks of the season.
  • A loss for Ft Wayne United 08G Academy (IN) in the first game of the last period meant that Barca Academy CLB Blue 08G (OH) could become champions of 14U Girls Premier II Blue, so long as Barca got one point from its final two games of the season. Barca did just that, tying Team Challenger FC 08G Gold (OH) on Saturday, followed by a 4-0 win in its final game.
  • A 1-1 draw between Beadling 2008 Boys Pre-MLS NEXT (PA-W) and Liverpool Clarkston 08 B Academy (MI) has left the division title in the balance. The draw, paired with a first loss of the season for Beadling, means that Liverpool can leapfrog Beadling into first place if it wins its remaining three games, which are scheduled to be played across five days this week.
  • In a winner-take-all matchup on Saturday, Club Ohio Dayton 09G Elite (OH) defeated CUP 09G Gold (OH), 3-1, to win the 13U Girls Premier Yellow Division. The two Ohio sides will play each other again in the Spring 2022 season, this time in Premier I.
  • Indy Phoenix FC 2009B (IN) won both of its games over the period to jump into first place and win the 13U Boys Premier White Division with one game left to play. Hoosier FC 2009 Elite Wolves (IN) matched those results to finish second to join Indy Phoenix in Premier I for the Spring 2022 season.
  • KHA Bluegrass G08 (KY) came in clutch, winning its final game of the season, 3-1, to put it at the top of the standings in 14U Girls Premier II White, which means KHA will be promoted to Premier I for the Spring 2022 season.
  • Lakota FC G09 Black (OH) took four points over the weekend to secure first place in 13U Girls Premier Blue. Despite being tied on points with FWSC 09G Dresden (IN) and having one game left to play, the Ohio side ensured a first-place finish thanks to its 5-3 win over FWSC earlier in the season.
  • The race for first place in 14U Girls Premier I is wide open, as GTFC Impact Girls 08 Premier (OH) secured a huge 1-0 win over TFA G08 Elite (OH) on Saturday, which put GTFC ahead of TFA in the standings with a couple of games remaining in the Fall 2021 season.
  • In a matchup between first and second place teams, Sporting Columbus Boys 2009 I (OH) edged Club Ohio 09B National (OH), 1-0, to clinch the title in 13U Boys Premier Yellow and, with it, a spot in Premier I for next season.
  • There were eight games played in 14U Boys Premier I, all of which had a major impact in determining which teams could move to Premier II next season. With each team having just one or two games left to play, five teams are still in the running to finish in the relegation places following the games played in recent weeks.

What they’re saying:

With it being the first fall season in which the 13U age group has competed, teams like AFFC 2009 Black (PA-W) were eager to earn their place in Premier I for the Spring 2022 campaign.

“The prospect of winning the 13U Boys Premier Blue Division was obviously exciting, but I was proud of how the team refocused that excitement and concentrated on the game that was within our control,” said Lukas Peterson, coach of AFFC 2009 Black (PA-W). “Once our team got that little taste of success, we wanted to keep pushing forward to improve ourselves and we look forward to testing our skills against some great competition next season in Premier I.”

“All the success our team is having this season would not be possible without the support of the parents and the whole Allegheny Force FC family,” Peterson continued. “We are proud that we could represent our club and strengthen our club name throughout the region.”

In the 14U age group, the Fall 2021 season represents a chance to earn promotion to Premier I for the Spring 2022 season. Team that earn promotion, such as KHA Bluegrass G08 (KY), will battle for a berth to the 2022 US Youth Soccer Midwest Regional Championships and qualification into the 2022-23 season of National League P.R.O.

“The team and staff worked collectively to prepare the players mentally and physically before games,” said Chase Warren of KHA Bluegrass G08 (KY). “The continuous support from the parents and family members helped boost our confidence to realize our objectives.

“The players are excited to know their hard work earned a championship, however our goal is to get better as a team and as individuals every season.”

The Great Lakes Conference is one of 13 Conferences in the National League, and it consists of teams primarily from New York West, Pennsylvania West, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota and Kentucky.

To follow the Great Lakes Conference results and standings, click here.

Click here for more information on the Great Lakes Conference. For more information on all 13 of the National League Conferences, the National League Showcase Series, and National League P.R.O., click here.