Event Recap: 2022 US Youth Soccer ODP Far West Championships



      PHOENIX, AZ (Jan. 7-10, 2022) - One of the most important events in the West Region for state associations to compete directly against each other took place earlier this month. Cal North, among the other 13 state associations, participated in the annual US Youth Soccer ODP Far West Championships in Phoenix, Arizona. This was the first ODP Championships event taking place after the 2021 event was cancelled due to COVID-19.

      Cal North successfully put together five boys teams and five girls teams in 13U-17U age groups. These teams were filled with some of the most talented players in Northern California who came together from different clubs to represent Cal North.

      At the event many college and US Youth ODP scouts were present throughout the four days looking for players that could potentially join their teams in the future. This event ultimately serves as a great platform for them to be seen and gain some attention from scouts early on in their youth careers, as is the case for the younger age groups. For the 15U-17U players, this event turns out to be a serious opportunity to be recruited by colleges and/or be invited to US Youth Soccer National ODP camp. 

      As a state, Cal North had ten teams competing in this event. Five made it past the group stage and on to the semifinals. From those five semifinalist, three teams reached the Championship match.

      Unfortunately, Cal North was not able to bring home a regional title from the 2022 US Youth Soccer ODP Far West Championships. Our 2009 Girls team led by coach Garrett Morgan lost a close one to Cal South by a score of one nil. The team scored 17 goals and allowed seven throughout the tournament, but also kept two clean sheets against Arizona and Colorado. The match versus Colorado was a 3-0 semifinal win. 

      WATCH: Post-game interview with 2009 Girls forward Keira after semifinal win 

      Our 2009 Boys team struggled in their Championship match as well. They faced a strong Washington side that went up early two goals in the first 20 minutes, making it an uphill battle from there. While the team did circulate the ball and maintained possession for longer periods of time than their opponent throughout the game, Washington capitalized on their opportunities in front of goal. The 2009 Boys scored a total of 21 goals and allowed seven, four of those goals allowed happened in the final match against Washington. The final score turned out to be 4-2. 

      WATCH: Post-game interview with 2009 Boys midfielder Christopher after semifinal win

      EN ESPAÑOL: Entrevista con Alexander del equipo varonil 2009 después del partido de semifinal

      The third and final Cal North team that reached the Championship game was the 2006 Boys. The team led by coach Benkay Kajihara reached the semifinals as a wildcard after winning two of their three matches. In the semifinals they beat Washington by a score of 2-1, a team they were familiar with and the only opponent they had lost to in group stage. In the Championship match they came close to lifting a regional title. The 2006 Boys were up for most of the game against Utah, but two set-piece goals within five minutes in the second half saw their lead slip away.  

      WATCH: Post-game interview with 2006 Boys midfielder Jorge after semifinal win

      WATCH: Post-game interview with 2006 Boys forward Jeremy after semifinal win

      Despite the results, the experience that players get during this trip is unique. Kids were challenged in and outside of the field to further enhance both sport & social skills, all while developing lifelong friendships. 


      Cal North ODP Teams at the 2022 US Youth Soccer ODP Far West Championships



      2009 Girls (13U)

      Head Coach: Garrett Morgan

      Assistant Coach: Michael Galvan

      Team Manager: Lanell Como



      2009 Boys (13U)

      Head Coach: Lee Dunne

      Assistant Coach: Marco Lopez

      Team Manager: Sebastian Osei


      2008 Girls (14U)

      Head Coach: Sarah Fawcett

      Assistant Coach: Bryan Holland

      Team Manager: Claire Knock


      2008 Boys (14U)

      Head Coach: Edward Kephart

      Assistant Coach: Arturo Cairel

      Team Manager: Cynthia Cairel


      2007 Girls (15U)

      Head Coach: Jonathan Scoles

      Assistant Coach: Kimberlee Gonzalez


      2007 Boys (15U)

      Head Coach: Ramiro Rodriguez

      Assistant Coach: Ricardo Martin

      Team Manager: Ajaya Rana


      2006 Girls (16U)

      Head Coach: Samuel Larrucea

      Assistant Coach: Jason Carter

      Team Manager: Wendy Arechiga



      2006 Boys (16U)

      Head Coach: Benkay Kajihara

      Assistant Coach: Anthony Villegas

      Team Manager: Belinda Halloran


      2005 Girls (17U)

      Head Coach: Kristopher Hall

      Assistant Coach: Laura Diaz


      2005 Boys (17U)

      Head Coach: David Briceño

      Assistant Coach: John Bustos

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      Upcoming Event: Cal North State Cup

      Cal North State Cup is the designated state-level qualifier for the US Youth Soccer Far West Regionals and the first step on the road to the US Youth Soccer National Championships. State Cup champions will advance to Regionals which will take place in early summer with the chance to qualify for US Youth Soccer National League Showcase. Learn more HERE



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