Henrico, Va. – Ellie Cook scored four goals as the Shenandoah Valley United 04/05 Girls Blue romped to a 5-1 victory over the PWSI Courage Girls 2004 Classic in the final of the U-15 Classic Division of the Capital Fall Classic.
It was a rare double for SVU, who repeated as tournament champions by beating the same opposition.
After scoring 23 goals in route to topping Group A, SVU continued its goal-fest in the final. The Harrisonburg based side impressed with fine build-up play through the back and midfield lines. The moves often culminated with a defense splitting pass to forwards making diagonal runs behind the PWSI back-four from wide starting positions.
“It’s an important end of the season marker for us,” said SVU Technical Director Tom Mitch. “We had a good season in the league and it’s good to come away at the end of the season with a strong performance. They [the girls] played well in every match. Our focus is on keeping possession and dominating the game. How can we move the other team out of the way, how can we defend as a group, etcetera? They did a good job.”
Mitch, standing in for head coach Trevor Nichols, said that going into the Capital Fall classic, he thought one of the biggest obstacles could be consistency. Especially, considering that his side only had one sub for the four-game, two-day bonanza. The offense was certainly consistent with results of 8-0, 5-5, 10-0 and 5-1, propelling SVU to the winner’s circle.
In Mitch’s eyes, one thing that is always consistent is the Capital Fall Classic and the quality of the tournament.
“We do this tournament every year,” the former NCAA champion as a player with the Duke Blue Devils said. “I mean, as long as I’ve been around [with SVU]. We do this tournament and obviously, the facilities are great. We don’t get to play on the best fields all the time in the league. Some of them are good, some of them aren’t. The fields are all good here.”
“It’s [the Capital Fall Classic] obviously well organized and well established. You know there are going to be good teams there,” Mitch continued. “We have teams at different levels and it’s important that it’s a big enough tournament so that our teams, regardless of their levels, there’s a place for them in there that’s going to be the right fit in terms of competition.”
The three-peat is on next year for Shenandoah Valley United 04/05 Girls Blue and the PWSI Courage Girls 2004 Classic could very well be their opponents in the final once again if all stays consistent.
“You guys got me twice,” Courage head coach Clint Mitchell said to SVU at the trophy presentation with a warm smile. “But I will get you the third time!”
If all goes according to script, that may just be the case. If Cook and the SVU offense are just as potent, however, it could be another monumental task.
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