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Local soccer squads head to National State Games

By By Ryan Satcher / staff writer
Aug. 3, 2003
Two local soccer teams will make the long trip to Hartford, Conn. this week to compete in the National State Games which run Thursday through Sunday.
The MYSO Crunch and the Meridian Ice qualified for the tournament, which is held every two years, by winning gold medals in the 2002 State Games of Mississippi.
The Ice took gold in U12 soccer by defeating Clinton 4-0 in the title game.
Kyle Dew, Andrew Watkins, Taylor Allen and Neil Dee each scored a goal in the victory. The win made the Ice 16-1 for the 2002 season and was the second tournament win for the team. They had also won the Snickers Cup in Hattiesburg earlier in the summer.
The Ice will compete in the U14 age bracket in the National State Games tournament.
The Ice start bracket play on Thursday morning at 9 a.m. against the GSL (Mass.) Legends. They will also play OBX (N.C.) Storm at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday and finish bracket play on Friday at 9:30 a.m. against Southwest Connecticut.
According to coach Kenny Watts, the players are excited about the trip to the big tournament.
The team was formed in February of 2002 and has been very successful. They have done enough already to make Watts proud.
The MYSO Crunch has also enjoyed success. The team won the gold medal in the Under 16 age bracket of the 2002 State Games.
They beat Clinton 3-1 in the deciding game. Anthony Thomas, Deran Wilson and Andrew Gambrell each scored a goal in the win.
The team also beat Columbus 4-1 and tied Northeast Jackson to win the round-robin tournament.
After winning gold in the State Games, the Crunch went to the Clash of the Champions in Huntsville, Ala. and took home the gold.
They beat teams from Tampa Bay, Fla., Outer Banks, N.C., and Birmingham, Ala. to win the tournament.
The Crunch, made up of a lot of local high school standouts, will compete in the U18 age bracket in the National State Games tournament.
The Crunch will battle teams from Pennsylvania, Oregon and Connecticut in the tournament.