Everybody comes to the Memorial Day Tournament to play highly competitive soccer games, but everyone has unique goals they seek to accomplish during the weekend. Some players are seeing big improvements in their game, some are connecting with college coaches, and others simply have their eyes on winning a championship in the final go-round with their spring soccer club.

“We’re improving as a team, just our playing style against better teams,” said Devan Jessop, who plays for NEFC’s U17 team alongside his twin brother Dylan. “Winning would be a nice way to end the season.”

Declan Ryan, a U17 player with AFC was happy for the opportunity to sharpen his skills against different competition than he faces in his high school league. “There are a lot of teams that really challenged us that we might not get in our high school league. It’s always good to come up here and test ourselves,” he said. “You’re looking to get better, and if a college coach sees you that’s an extra bonus.”

The Shoreline FC Sounders U18 team won at last year’s event and they went into Monday’s games with the goal of defending their title. “The high school season built everyone up, and now we’re back with our team with great improvement from everyone,” said Ben Demaio, who came to the tournament with hopes of both winning the event with his teammates and impressing college scouts by doing his part for the team. “This event has a lot of teams and a lot of players, so I like it much more than other events I’ve been to. The level of competition is better,” he said.

If you think your team’s players would benefit from playing in next year’s Memorial Day Tournament check out the tournament website and please reach out for more information!