There has never been a girls or boys soccer team from the Midstate to win the state, region and national title in the same season, until now. Penn FC 17U Lightning won the national title on Sunday, making Central Pennsylvania history.
The girls beat Utah Celtic in the United States Youth Soccer National Championship to complete the triple-title feat that previously eluded any soccer team from the area.
“It’s a very difficult thing to do,” said Penn FC Coach Bill Becher. “I don’t know that we could have thought this would happen in our wildest dreams. We set goals, and we strived for it, but to actually do it was pretty amazing.”
But it didn’t come easy. In the regional final, the girls trailed 2-0 with less than five minutes to play. Three straight goals turned the tide, and the girls ran into the national tournament with momentum.
That’s when the expectation was set: the Lightning could win a national title.
“Right after regionals,” said Lightning defender Hannah Costa on when she knew a championship was possible. “Playing HMS in the finals, [it was] a tough game, but we came back at the end. With five minutes left, we scored three goals. That’s when I said ‘we got this.’”
The team went 2-0-1 through group stage and went onto win their semi-final game 2-1 against the LASC G04 Bradbury.
In the final, it was a rematch against the Utah Celtic FC 04 with your Lightning coming out on top 2-0! Amazing job ladies. Your fans are all so very proud of your accomplishment.
Way to represent your State, your Club, and your team! PennFC PROUD!