The grassroots of soccer in American showed how strong and ubiquitous they are this summer. With the PDL, NPSL and USASA Amateur Cup Champions recently crowned, and our largest US Adult Soccer Fest complete, we look back at the highlights of the amateur game over the past few months.
Michigan Bucks Claim the Hank Steinbrecher Cup
The Bucks toppled NPSL Champion AFC Cleveland in a 3-0 win to hoist the Steinbrecher Cup. It was the second straight year the PDL won. Michigan defeated last year’s champion Chicago FC United in its semifinal. The Bucks would continue their winning ways to a 14-game undefeated streak.
Christos FC Becomes America’s Amateur Darling
Maryland’s Christos FC fell short in the Hank Steinbrecher Cup, but stole America’s heart during their Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup run. Over 5,000 fans, many Christos supporters, watched them take on DC United in the fourth round of the U.S. Open Cup and went into a ruckus when Christos took a 1-0 lead. Christos, who won the 2016 USASA Amateur Cup, received coverage from outlets such as ESPN, Sports Illustrated and the Washington Post. DC United Coach Ben Olsen told the Washington Post, “As we grow as a soccer country, this is going to happen more and more—better quality amateurs out there that can make these types of runs. What’s great about the Open Cup is that these stories can happen.”
Christos’ O30 team will try to add another trophy to the club’s case. They’re competing for the Gerhard Mengel Cup Aug. 18-19.
Lansdowne Bhoys Continue Region I’s Amateur Cup Streak
In a thrilling championship match that ended 2-2 (9-8 PK) Eastern NY’s Lansdowne Bhoys defeated Wisconsin’s Bavarian SC to keep the National Amateur Cup title in Region I. The newly coined Fritz Marth trophy was presented by Fritz Marth Jr. in front of a crowd of over 2,000 people. Lansdowne Bhoys will also compete for the Werner Fricker Cup Aug. 18-19.
PDL and NPSL Crown New Champions
Elm City Express won the NPSL championship in the club’s inaugural season. On their home field at Yale University they defeated Midland-Odessa FC 5-0. Elm City Express Coach Teddy Haley said after the win, “It’s massive for us. It started with the ownership group and the management group doing it the right way from the beginning, putting together a collection of players that bought into what we wanted to do and the vision of it. The team worked really hard to get better every week and stay together, grow together. We talked about going on a run and doing something special.”
The Charlotte Eagles defeated Thunder Bay Chill 2-1 to win their first PDL Championship. After falling behind the Eagles scored the winning goal in the 61st minute on a free kick. Charlotte had a record 1,427 fans watch them win the title.
Adult Soccer Fest Reaches New Heights
A record 125 teams traveled to Nashville to take part in this year’s Adult Soccer Fest. Tennessee Adult Soccer were great hosts and Richard Siegel Park was an amazing place to play the games. Teams that defended their titles were Radnor United (Men’s O50), Freddy Fund (Men’s O60), Leahi (Women’s O50 & O55) and Detroit Strong (Women’s O65). Next year’s Adult Soccer Fest will be in Bellingham, Washington.