Levy Lightning 3v3 qualifies for World tournament

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By The Staff

The U-13 Levy Lightning 3v3 soccer team placed fourth at Nationals held earlier this month at Disney’s Wild World of Sports in Orlando, qualifying them for the World Championships tournament next January.

“Everybody contributed on offense and scored, and it was team defense,” said Head Coach Max Aguirre. “We played excellent soccer.”

The U-13 Levy Lightning team is comprised of Max Aguirre, Jimmy Carr, Brandon Quinn, Alex Salbert, Arric Wali, and Thomas Womble. The 11, 12 and 13 year-old boys come from the Bronson, Williston and Alachua areas.

Coach Aguirre is also the Soccer Director for the Bronson Youth League. Assistant Coach Lee Womble is the Soccer Director for the Williston Youth Athletic Association and Assistant Coach John Salbert is the Director of the Alachua Youth Soccer Association.

When they first reached Nationals, the team was randomly placed into pool play with the other teams from the southeastern states.

“We played three games and finished first in our pool,” coach Aguirre said.

Friday’s first game of pool play was against the Lehigh Lightning (South Florida) with a final score of 8-2.

The next game was more intense, with Levy Lightning beating Azuri out of Orlando 8-6.

On Saturday, in the last game of pool play, the Levy Lightning crashed down on the Low Country Predators out of South Carolina 9-3.

In Sunday’s first Final Four game, the Lightning played a tough game against Arsenal from Amelia Island, but couldn’t quite make it in the end. Arsenal won that one 4-2.

Vying for third place, the Levy Lightning boys found themselves up against the Low Country Predators once again. In a close match, the Predators came out on top 9-7.

“The top four teams in this tournament have beaten each other and have been beaten by each other - that’s how evenly we’re matched up,” coach Aguirre said.

Fourth place in the Nationals tournament means a trip back to Disney’s Wild World of Sports next January for the World Championships Tournament.

“This is a good group of kids and we’ve come far,” Aguirre said. “We want to thank all of our sponsors for making this possible for our kids.”

Now it’s time for more fundraising. The team will be holding fundraisers like car washes, bake sales, raffles and “whatever we can come up with,” Aguirre said.

“We need to raise $4,000 to $5,000 to go to the World.” If you’d like to help, call Coach Max Aguirre at (352) 214-2561.

Contact Kellie Parkin at editor@cedarkeybeacon.com