As I begin preparing for the 2015 soccer year back in my home state I can’t help but feel something still resonating from the recent USASA Mid Year conference a few weeks ago. As usual it was quite a jam-packed weekend. It was filled with workshops, formal meetings and, of course, some of the most important encounters of all being those in the hallways, at the social events and informal meetings. In any setting, getting real face time with friends and colleagues from around the country can be truly invaluable. However one of the truly special events of the weekend, the USASA Hall of Fame dinner, brings us together to celebrate and honor the amazing people who have made such a dramatic contribution to our soccer community. With each passing conference I can’t help but be drawn further into the biographies of the inductees, truly feeling the emotional impact as they tell their own story. The weight of their accomplishments is almost crushing in the sense that upon reflection I feel so small, my contribution being so insignificant, and that almost every soccer aspect of the world around me that I’ve perhaps taken for granted for the past 35+ years exists because of what they’ve built.
It becomes clearer to me with each passing year that we are truly standing on the shoulders of giants.
The 2014 USASA Hall of Fame inductees are: Alphonse Amato, Tony Briggs McGee, Richard Groff, Paul Sherer, Hank Steinbrecher
Midwest Soccer and the entire USASA family were privileged to honor Julie Ilacqua this past weekend at the USASA Midyear Meeting. Her accomplishments and dedication to the game are astounding, and we get the sense that there is much more to come.
Julie is the former Managing Director of Referee Programs for the United States Soccer Federation. In this position she was responsible for the overall management of the Referee Department for US Soccer until her retirement in 2008.
Julie worked for World Cup 94 at the Detroit venue from 1992-1994 and was a member of the Bid Committee, helping to bring World Cup to the Pontiac Silverdome.
Among the boards she has served on are the Michigan Bid Committee Foundation, NASO Board of Directors (including a year as Chair) and the United States Soccer Federation Board of Directors.
As a referee Julie was the first female to officiate an intercollegiate national championship, but she is genuinely most proud of the heights to which the female referees of US Soccer have worked internationally.
Julie also served on the National Referee Committee, including time as chair of that committee, before she took the position with the United States Soccer Federation.
We are so proud of Julie and we continue to be extremely grateful and deeply inspired by her accomplishments and contributions to the beautiful game.
We recently had the privilege to recognize and honor this extremely gifted man. The coach of RWB Adria since 2007, Sinisa Alebic turned the Chicago side into a national powerhouse.
Over the past few years RWB Adria represented Region II at national competitions in all three divisions, Open, Amateur and Over-30.
Sinisa’s in-state record speaks for itself: 2007-2012 National League Champions and 2008-2013 NSL Coach of the Year; 2008, 2009, 2011-2014 Indoor NSL Champions; 2010 and 2013 Illinois State Cup Champions.
His record at nationals is impressive as well. He’s lead Adria to championships in the National Cups Open Division, the 2014 National Amateur Championship and the Croatian National Soccer Tournament. He’s also coached Adria in the Lamar Hunt Open Cup.
Congratulations to Sinisa Alebic for all of your hard earned successes. Your dedication and work ethic are a true inspiration. The Midwest Soccer family is so proud to have you in our community.
The dust has finally settled and the results are in. This year’s MSA Ancient Ranger Tournament in Minneapolis saw a record 46 teams registered. And with the Cardinals FC (O30M) finally coming of age we may be witnessing the dawning of a new dynasty in the O30 men’s division.
Teams and individuals from Alaska, Florida, Iowa, Texas, Wisconsin, Colorado, Missouri, Kansas, Indiana, Michigan and Illinois came to participate in the Minnesota tournament that many players claim is the highlight of their soccer year.
For your viewing pleasure, here are a couple very important notes from the Region II Cups Commissioner, Dyann Pugliese:
Deadlines for the Region II US Adult National Cups are (dates below refer to 2015):
- May 3 – Member organizations in Region II must provide the divisions in which teams will be entered. This will allow member organizations to commit to entering a team in a division, but conduct qualifiers until the team entry deadline.
- May 26 – Team entries must be received by 6pm (EDT) by the Cups Commissioner. (Electronic signatures will be accepted on entry forms.)
- May 31 – Team rosters must be received no later than 6pm (EDT) by the Cups Commissioner. (Electronic signatures will be accepted on roster forms.) ROSTERS ARE FROZEN ON THIS DATE.
- June 12-14 – Region II National Cups in Overland Park, Kansas
IMPORTANT: REGION II WILL NOT BE PROVIDING ANY SUBSIDIES FOR THE US SOCCER LAMAR HUNT CUP. No funding is received by the Region from US Adult or US Soccer for the Lamar Hunt Open Cup.
As the ground metaphorically continues to shift underneath the structural framework of the Open Cup events (of which there are two), we can offer some insight into the current developments. If you have specific questions, your best bet is to connect with the Region II Cups Commissioner Dyann Pugliese.
Teams interested in the Open Cups this coming year have two events to consider, the USASA Werner Fricker Open Cup and the US Soccer Lamar Hunt Open Cup, each requiring an entry fee and associated team registration form. (Thankfully both are on the same entry form.)
As for the US Lamar Hunt Open Cup, the need for a regional winner and runner-up to be declared by March 15, 2015 means that we’ll begin our regional qualifiers no later than September 28, 2014. (The USASA Werner Fricker Open Cup regional stage will take place mid-June 2015 so stay tuned for details.)
The upshot of this whole deal? If your team is interested in the US Soccer Lamar Hunt Open Cup then start prepping immediately. More details are coming your way soon…
Officially slated for the “Better Late Than Never” category, this year’s Midwest Soccer Tournament of Champions results are finally posted. (Sincerest apologies from the editor…)
Congratulations to the squads who battled their way to the finals at this year’s TOC:
(Full score tables are here)