Our JV Rhinos recently left their mark on a tournament in Guatemala City. Played at the Futeca Soccer Academy, our boys staretd slow - seemingly over their head. Typicall playing against teams much bigger than they are, we finished the season with a .500 record, and barely snuck into the playoffs with the last seed.
But we had grown as a team during the year, getting better week by week. In the first round of the playoffs, we knocked off the #2 seed to get to the semi finals! In the semi's we lost to the #1 seed by 1 goal. A sad loss as we felt we outplayed the other team, but they had a fluke goal bounce in toward the end of the game.
We played one more game to see who placed #3 and #4 - and won that game convincingly to take the #3 spot. It was a great day... we received the bronze trophy and each of the kids received medals!
Fair to say that for our boys - growing up in rural poverty, and most having never even left their village before the boys academy started - this was a moment of a lifetime. In front of a packed crowd, they were called up on stage to receive their trophy. A member of the Guatemalan National Team greeted them and gave them their medals. What a memory for these kids, and what a testament to the hard work they put in every day!
CHECK OUT THIS SHORT VIDEO FROM THE DAY!