On the eve of the Missouri State Cup, opening Saturday October 25th in Kansas City, one player goes into the games knowing that her November schedule will overflow with opportunities.
Brionna Halverson, a sophomore at Bolivar High School in Bolivar, Missouri joined Futura Academy Forte Elite 98-99 (U16 Girls) this season and they go into the State Cup as the favorites in their age group. That’s not my opinion, that’s the result of the squad finishing 9-0 in the Midwest Regional League Premier Division this season. That includes a 2-0 win over the defending champion Lou Fusz Wipke squad. Futura lost to JB Marine Schneider in the semifinals last year, another team that will be looking for hardware this season as they round out the Missouri Top 3.
Halverson began participating in the Olympic Development Program (ODP) here in Missouri several years ago and last year she was part of the Missouri squad at the Region II Camp. During the Camp in Rockford she was invited to participate as a member of the Region II squad, one of only two Missouri players (with Kayla Denver, a Futura teammate). That led to competing with the Region II team at the 2013 Thanksgiving Inter-Regional , an event that pits the four Regional teams in a round-robin format that draws a large number of college coaches.
From that experience came another invite. Eighteen girls from the US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (US Youth Soccer ODP) were invited to participate in the US Youth Soccer ODP Girls 1999 National Camp, held June 15-22 at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif. The camp coincided with the U.S. Under-17 Women’s National Team Camp, and US Youth Soccer players will be evaluated for possible participation in U.S. National Team events.
It worked! Listen to my interview with Brionna (below) from earlier this month where she mentions she was invited with a few other girls to scrimmage with the U17 team during Camp in June.
Now, she is a member of the 25 player camp that U.S. Under-17 Women’s National Team head coach B.J. Snow has named for a training camp running from Nov. 1-8 at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, Calif. in the second domestic event of this cycle. The first was a highly successful trip to the Korea Republic at the end of August/beginning of September in which they earned two convincing victories against the hosts.
This U-17 camp, which features mostly players born 1999 and a few in 2000, will run concurrently with the U.S. Under-15 Girls’ National Team camp, which features players mostly born 2000 and a few in 2001.
The age cut-off for the next U-17 Women’s World Cup in 2016, which is currently scheduled to be played in Jordan, is for players born on or after Jan. 1, 1999.
So let’s recap – Missouri ODP Pool, to Region II Pool/Holdover and Region II team for the Inter-Regionals in 2013. In 2014, the National ODP Pool that included training with the U17 National Team in June. Now, following State Cup she will train with the U17 National Team Nov 1-8, followed by the ODP Thanksgiving Inter-Regional representing Region II November 24-28. That will be preceeded by the opening of National League.
Futura returns for their second year in the elite National League program, limited to only 16 teams per gender age group. Teams play a seven-game schedule over two weekends, facing each team within its age group division one time. The Top four teams (Two from each Division) advance to the National Championship.
The opening weekend is November 20-23 in Wilson, N.C. at the CASL Showcase. The girls will complete National League play at the Disney Soccer Showcase December 31 – January 2 in Orlando, FL. Brionna is going to be a busy girl!