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March 5, 2008 > Union City Eagles win at North State Cup

Union City Eagles win at North State Cup

Submitted By Victor Juarez
Photos By courtesy of John Sanchez

The Union City Alliance FC Eagles U-13 boys' soccer team won the 2008 California Youth Soccer Association-North (CYSA-North) State Cup Championship by defeating North Fresno Cyclone 3-0 in Morgan Hill. The CYSA-North encompasses nine districts made up of 48 counties from north of Bakersfield in Kern County, all the way to the Oregon border. Over a three week period, 60 teams in 16 different brackets participated in the CYSA-North State Cup, which was held Feb. 2 - 23. During their dominant run to the Cup Final the Eagles outscored their opponents 26-5. The Eagles bring the Union City Youth Soccer League (UCYSL) its first ever CYSA-North State Cup Championship in its more than thirty year existence.

Union City Alliance FC Eagles players are Jorge Ramirez, Edgardo Cuellar,JJ Banuelos, Erick De La Peľa, Miguel Bedolla, Edgar Cerna, Carlos Diaz, Francisco Fonseca, Ruben Morales, Roberto Mendoza, Daniel Ochoa, Pedro Regalado, Salvador Sanchez Jr., Jose Sanchez, Moises Sanchez, Edgar Valadez, Luis Villalpando, Gerardo Zendejas and Jesus Zepeda Avalos Ragles. Coaching Staff includes Luis Ruelas, Enrique Villalpando and Javier Diaz.

The Eagles found themselves full circle from last year, in a rain drenched CYSA-North State Cup Championship final at the Morgan Hill Outdoor Sports Complex against North Fresno Cyclone, who knocked off the No. 4 nationally ranked PAC Tigres in the semi-final round. Certifying there would not be a repeat of the previous year's State Cup final (lost 1-0 to Mill Valley SC Fusion) the Eagles continued with their early scoring fury. With only two minutes into the championship match, Sanchez found himself scoring what would be one of two goals for the day.

The first goal came off a breakaway down the left flank and cutting inside to shake the defender, Sanchez drilled the ball near post, pass the Fresno net minder. Immediately following the Cyclone's kickoff, Diaz intercepted a pass and fed it to Valadez, who launched it to Sanchez for his second goal of the day. The highly emotional Eagles found themselves ahead of the Cyclone 2-0 in the first seven minutes of the match.

In the second half, De la Peľa led a give in go series with Ramirez out of the back field. After crossing into Cyclone territory, Ramirez sent a perfect pass to Ochoa, who upon receiving the pass from Ramirez, then sliced through two Fresno defenders to blast the third and final goal of the match. No doubt the real story of the game was the Eagles unrelenting defense. Sanchez, Banuelos, Cuellar and their captain Villapando all made excellent defensive plays to hold Cyclone to only three shots on goal and only one save needed from goalkeeper Bedolla. History would not repeat itself as the Eagles became the first ever CYSA-North State Cup Champions in Union City history with a dominant shut out victory over the Fresno Cyclone.

The Union City Alliance FC Eagles State Cup Championship win marked the culmination of a highly impressive season. The team ended up 27-4-2 (W-T-L) in competitive play over the course of the fall and winter season, which includes first place finishes in league play and five prestigious tournaments.

From June 16 - 22, the Eagles will represent CYSA Cal-North in U.S. Soccer's Far West Regionals in a week-long tournament in Honolulu, Hawaii. This trip will cost the team $27,000, and so the Eagles are currently seeking tax deductible donations and sponsorships to help fund the teams cost of the Hawaii bound Far West Regional Tournament. If interested in helping the Eagles with a tax deductible donation or sponsorship please call (510) 675-0243.

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