For the vast majority of youth soccer clubs, the end of June is a time for rest and light play. For a few elite clubs, it is the most important time of year: regional playoffs. Defying statistical logic, FC Alliance has had a record-setting three teams advance out of regional pool play. Competing against state and premier league champions from powerhouse states such as Texas, Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina- as well as eight other states- squads from Tennessee are often lucky to win a single game at regionals. Let alone advance. However, advance they indeed have: the 97 Boys Black and 97 Girls Black are in the semifinals, and the 96 Girls Black won their pool and went to the quarterfinals.
There was a time where just making the regional tournament was an accomplishment for East Tennessee clubs. Next, it was winning a game. For FC Alliance, it has all of a sudden become bigger than that. The 96 Girls Black went undefeated in pool play. The 97 Boys Black advanced out of pool play and defeated 2011 national champion Boca (FL) in the quarterfinals. The 97 Girls Black shook off an opening game loss to rip off three straight wins.
"Right now, our teams are playing really well," commented Director of Coaching Josh Gray. "At this level, everyone is so good, you have to play your best game every time you step on the field."
Gray coaches two of the teams: 96 Girls Black and 97 Boys Black. Jonathan Thompson coaches the 97 Girls Black.
Update (2:30PM, June 25): 96 Girls Black fall 2-1. 97 Boys Black and 97 Girls Black play Wednesday morning in the semifinals.
See photos and updates here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/FC-Alliance/189732881045727?fref=ts