Coached by Andrew McKnight, team members are: Griffin Albaugh, Tommy Bitter, Alexy Boehm, Raudel Fierro Perez, Eduvie Ikoba, Sameeullah Jung, Bobby McCaw, Adam Nicholson, Will Nurre, Collin O'Meara, Addison Parrish, Nick Schwake, Kenan Smajlovic, Samuel Steenhoek, AJ Thompson, Jordan Webb, Hunter Wong
DES MOINES, Iowa (March 3, 2014) — The 1997 Iowa Boys ODP team advanced to the Finals of the ODP National Championships after defeating Eastern Pennsylvania in Friday's semifinals, 4-3 (3-2 KFTM). In Sunday's Final, the team tied the match at three with under a minute to go, but fell in KFTM to Cal-South, 4-2.
Courtesy of US Youth Soccer, Semifinals
In a match that played out all the way to kicks from the mark, Iowa’s 97 Boys team defeated Eastern Pennsylvania 4-3. Iowa possessed a lengthy advantage after Eduvie Ikoba scored early in the 4th minute. Eastern PA’s Ahmad Awadalla found the equalizer in the 55th minute, and the 1-1 score led to overtime. After an additional 30 minutes of play, tough defense from both sides kept the score tied. In penalty kicks, Iowa’s three goals outweighed E-PA’s two, ultimately giving them the win.
Courtesy of US Youth Soccer, Final
The 1997 Cal South Boys team also earned their second straight title after a challenging win over Iowa. Although the first half saw many chances, both sides went into halftime scoreless. The second half intensified even further, as both teams managed to get three goals each. Iowa’s Eduvie Ikoba broke the stalemate in the 53rd minute and Adam Nicholson scored for Iowa in the 71st minute. Cal South got three goals including a pair by Marco Bueno, which put him as the age group’s leading goal scorer. Just as Cal South was about to claim the title with a 3-2 advantage and a minute left in the game, Kenan Smajlovic was able to roll the ball into the net for Iowa, taking the game to penalty kicks. Cal South’s keeper outshined in penalty kicks by skillfully blocking two shots, and ultimately Cal South’s four PK’s beat Iowa’s two to give them the championship.
About US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (US Youth Soccer ODP) - US Youth Soccer ODP, established in 1977, is the original Olympic development program in the United States. Formed to identify a pool of players in each age group from which a National Team could be selected for international competition, selected players are exposed to the nation's top coaches from collegiate institutions, U.S. Soccer and the professional leagues. Programs exist in each state and with competitions such as the US Youth Soccer ODP Championships, Interregional Training/Competition, Regional Camps and International play. US Youth Soccer ODP continues to lead the way in elite player identification and development. US Youth Soccer ODP is an approved program of the U.S. Soccer Federation. For more information, visit www.USYouthSoccer.org/Programs/OlympicDevelopmentProgram.
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