Soccer tourney to boost region

Published 10:34 pm Saturday, May 16, 2009

Barboursville, W.Va. — The 2009 US Youth Soccer Region I (East) Championships, to be played July 2-7, is estimated to provide more than $12.5 million in economic impact to the greater Barboursville, W.Va., area.

Local restaurants, hotels, retail stores and others will benefit from the more 4,500 players and their families who will take part in the six-day tournament. Visitors to the Barboursville area will book an estimated 11,000 room nights at area hotels.

The top 282 US Youth Soccer Boys and Girls teams, including 19 teams from host West Virginia Soccer Association, will compete at the Barboursville Soccer Complex, Huntington YMCA Kennedy Center and Scott Orthopedics Soccer Complex for the US Youth Soccer Region I Championships.

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“The Village of Barboursville area is anxious to welcome the thousands of visitors associated with the US Youth Soccer Region I Championships. With $12.5 million of economic impact estimated, our community will also benefit from this large and prestigious event,” said Len Rogers, West Virginia Soccer president and local organizing committee chair of the 2009 US Youth Soccer Region I Championships. “We are pleased to have the opportunity to show our soccer families the upgrades we have made to the city and everything else we can offer.”

The US Youth Soccer Region I Championships, featuring top teams in the Under-12 through Under-19 age groups, begin Thursday, July 2, with opening ceremonies at Marshall University’s Joan C. Edwards Stadium. Round robin games are Friday, July 3, through Sunday, July 5, with semifinal matches Monday, July 6. The US Youth Soccer Region I Champions will be crowned following final games on Tuesday, July 7.

US Youth Soccer State Cup champions and select runners-up from 15 US Youth Soccer State Associations in Region I, including host West Virginia Soccer Association will participate. The other State Associations represented are Connecticut, Delaware, Eastern New York, Eastern Pennsylvania, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York West, Pennsylvania West, Rhode Island, Vermont and Virginia.

Regional winners of the Under-14 through Under-19 brackets earn a berth to the 2009 US Youth Soccer National Championships July 21-26, at Citizens Bank Field at Progin Park in Lancaster, Mass.

One of the 12 national crowns awarded is the James P. McGuire Cup, the oldest trophy in youth sport dating back to 1935 with the inaugural youth championships. The Under-19 Boys National Champion will hoist the McGuire Cup on the 74th anniversary of the storied cup.