Spring soccer is underway for the Sawtooth United F.C. (SUFC), which has offered youth soccer programs in the Wood River Valley for 20 years.
This year’s mild weather has enabled the SUFC development program for ages 5-10 to be playing on grass since April 1. There have been 265 boys and girls signed up for the program, directed by former Wood River High School girls’ varsity head coach Greg Gvozdas.
SUFC’s competitive program for ages 10-16 has been giving local players the chance to travel to Boise, Pocatello, Idaho Falls and Twin Falls for league and tournament play. About 150 players are registered.
Coming up: The SUFC is organizing its spring fundraiser—hanging flower baskets from Webb Nursery that make a great Mother’s Day gift. All competitive and travel teams are selling tickets. One $40 ticket is good for a 12-inch extra-large hanging basket.
Baskets will be available after May 11. The pick-up locations are May 11-31 at the Bellevue Garden Center only, and June 1-July 31 at all three Webb Nursery locations in Bellevue, Hailey and Ketchum. Final pick-up day is July 31.
Also, the 10th annual Soccer in the Sawtooths recreational youth soccer jamboree has been scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, May 18-19 at fields in Hailey. Age groups will be coed U-6, U-7 and U-8, plus boys’ U-10 and girls’ U-10. Field space is limited so sign up early. Entry fee is $85 per team.
The Canyon Rim Classic in Twin Falls is May 11-12.
U-11 boys win Pocatello tournament
The league and tournament season is off to a great start for Sawtooth United’s travelers.
Last weekend, SUFC sent six teams to Boise for weekly league play. The teams have welcomed coaches Liv Jensen (girls’ U-11), Jon Piggins (girls’ U-11), Carolina Stevens (girls’ U-12), Kelley Sinnott (girls’ U-13), Werner Morawitz and Jack Dies (boys’ U-14) and Tim Graves (boys’ U-15).
Each team played two games for a full day of soccer.
Another four SUFC teams traveled to Pocatello for the Portneuf Valley Soccer Club meet. These competitive teams were coached by Sally Gerlach (boys’ U-11), Margo Ros (boys’ U-11), Trent Stumph (boys’ U-12) and Jordan Ped (boys’ U-13).
The SUFC White U-11 boys’ team won the championship with two shootout victories and one shootout loss making up the team’s 3-1-0 record.
The nine players attending the tournament were Shea Brokaw, Alex Daves, Chris Davitt, Felix Gerlach, Teagan McAvoy, Max Moss, Rafael Muniz, Carter Strope and Fletcher Stumph.
SUFC’s champions were one of three teams in the “A” bracket including Pocatello Bagley and Pocatello Fire. The first game resulted in a 10-0 SUFC victory over Bagley.
The second SUFC White game against Fire ended with a tie 1-1 in regulation and immediately went to a shootout in which Wood River lost 3-1.
Even with the shootout loss SUFC White won the “A” bracket and headed to the semi-finals on Sunday seeded first.
SUFC played the second-seeded B bracket team, which happened to be SUFC Blue. After 50 hard-fought minutes played by both squads that ended in another 1-1 tie, SUFC White headed into its second shootout. SUFC White walked away with the shootout win and headed to the final game.
Pocatello Fire won its semi-final match setting up a rematch of SUFC White’s earlier shootout loss. This time, White battled fatigue but dug deep.
The final game had two 30- minute halves, followed by two five-minute overtime periods. It still resulted in a 0-0 tie and once again headed back into a shoot out. This time SUFC won the shootout 3-2 after six shooters for each team.