The Region is down to its final weekend of qualifiers with half of its slates set for next month’s finals that will be played at the Ukrainian American Sport Center in Horsham and the Vereinigung Erzgebirge Club in Warminster. This weekend we will find out who will play for the Amateur, Over-40 and Over-50 titles.
In the Amateur Cup, Newtown Pride FC of Connecticut will host FC Omens of Massachusetts in the northern semifinal. The Pride defeated NY Pancyprian Freedoms of Eastern New York 3:2 in their quarterfinal round. Gabriel Ganzer scored first for Newtown only to see a penalty from Joseph Holland draw it even before Holland put the Pancyprian ahead at half time. At the restart, Ronaldinho Diniz evened it up and Ganzer put away the game winner in the 82nd minute.
In the southern bracket, last season’s Region winner NOVA FC of Metro DC/Virginia will travel to Maryland to take on Sure Sports FC. In its first ever regional match, Sure Sports defeated West Chester United of Eastern Pennsylvania 4:1 to reach the semifinal. NOVA easily handled Appalachia Steel FC of Pennsylvania West 8:2 that included a hat trick from JP Ayolmbong.
The Werner Fricker Cup final will feature two former champions of the competition, West Chester United and Lansdowne Yonkers FC of Eastern New York. Cup holders West Chester defeated Christos FC of Maryland 3:1 to reach the title match. The Bhoys go through with the same result with a victory over Vistula Garfield SC of New Jersey in their semifinal tie.
The Gerhard Mengel Cup will see the NY Greek American of Eastern New York take on Vereinigung Erzgebirge of Eastern Pennsylvania for the Over-30 Championship. Paul Nattoli scored a brace and Sikele Silvester the game winner in a 3:2 win for the Greeks over Sportfriends Polonia SC of New Jersey. Markus Lahtinen and Mark Gallagher tallied for Sportfriends. VE drew 1:1 with the Tartan Devils of Pennsylvania West as Greg Shertzer put the East Penn side up in the 54th minute followed by Jolo Reuben tying it up just before the final whistle. VE edged their cross-state opponent 3:2 in penalty rounds.
In the Over-40 Cup, Christos FC earned its spot in the final after a lone goal from Dan Lader was enough to defeat Phoenix SC of Eastern Pennsylvania. John Schickert earned the shutout. They await to winner between Kel Kau Masters of Massachusetts and Manhattan Celtic Masters of Eastern New York who play this weekend.
The inaugural Over-50 Cup will feature Chesire Azzurri of Connecticut against True Soccer FC of Massachusetts in one semifinal while the Philly Bucks of Eastern Pennsylvania will host Christos FC.
Our finals weekend will be on 17 & 18 June and it includes the Women’s Championship along with the Men Under-23 Championship for the Gus Xikis Trophy. Registration for the U23 tournament is open until Monday, 29 May. Teams interested in the Women’s Championship should contact their State Association.