By Jill Fox
The thrill of victory was all over the faces of youth soccer players after qualifying for the Regional Championships on Sunday.
Many of the boys attending Westglades Middle, Coral Springs Middle, and Coral Springs Charter School competed together for the first time this year.
Team Captain Diego Mendez said the team worked really hard and practiced non-stop.
The Westglades eighth-grader, who has been playing soccer in the Coral Springs area since the age of four, plans to continue at Marjory Stoneman Douglas and hopes to go all the way.
“Winning state meant a lot because it was the first year with a new team,” he said.
The U14 team, who currently practice in Coconut Creek, will represent Florida at the US Youth Soccer Southern Regional Championship in Decatur, Alabama, on June 8.
“We are all super excited to go to Alabama,” said Diego, whose father, Jose Mendez, along with coaches Freddy Ponton and German Lopez, led the team of 18 boys to victory.
“The boys faced playing restrictions, cancellation of games and tournaments due to Covid-19,” said Jose, “And they finished with a record of 9 and 1.
In July, the winner of Regionals travels to Des Moines, Iowa, to become U.S. Youth Soccer National Champions.
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