BY DAVE PEDERSEN
Not making it to the state youth soccer tournament did not define the seasons for the Wright County Soccer club’s U11 boys and U16 girls C2 teams.
Both teams only had one loss during the season, which happened to come in the first round of the single elimination playoffs. Because of the success both teams will be promoted to the C1 level next season.
Josh Tierney is coach of the boys U11 team that won the West District championship, finishing the season at 9-1-1.
“Wright County is a small club compared to most in the metro area,” said Tierney. “We started the season by winning the National Sports Center Cup tournament in Blaine, which was surprising because we had not had a lot of practice time.”
The team kept on winning, including capturing the crown at the Star of the North State Games in St. Cloud. Despite controlling play for much of the game, WCS lost 1-0 in the first playoff game.
“We have a strong defense, only allowing 11 goals the entire season,” said Tierney about being tied for the lowest goals allowed in the state at that level. “Our goalie Wyatt Hiers was phenomenal.”
The success of the team should not have been too much of a surprise after going undefeated in the fall league. Tryouts for next season are at noon, Aug. 3 in Buffalo.
Tierney played both soccer and basketball at Minnetonka, but played basketball in college. However, he started coaching youth soccer when in high school and has done so for 16 years.
Andrew Taylor is coach of the club’s U16 girls team that also went unbeaten during the league season, finishing at 8-1-1.
“We did well despite having our captain and center midfielder suffer a season-ending knee injury in the second game of the season,” said Taylor about Abby Munsterteiger.
The team entered the recent USA Cup tournament in Blaine, placed in the Premier Division, up one level. Taylor said the team did not win any games when playing against top teams from around the country, but it will be better off because of the experience.
During the regular season the team yielded just four goals in 10 games, the lowest in the district. One goalie, Paige James, did not allow any goals when posting six shutouts.