By Alex Kushel
Sun Sentinel Correspondent
Jun 03, 2021 4:52 PM
The Boynton Knights travel soccer club U14 girls’ black were one of the elite teams throughout the season and it recently finished as the runner-up at the prestigious Florida State Cup in Auburndale.
The Knights U14, under the direction of head coach Jimmy Barrionuevo and assistant coach Fabian Canales, was the first girls’ team at the soccer club to reach the finals of the Florida State Cup. The team defeated the Clearwater Chargers 1-0 in the semifinals before falling to the Sunrise Sting in the title contest.
“It was a really good experience for the girls to reach the final of the State Cup,” Barrionuevo said. “We continued to improve a lot and had success.”
Asaf Lubezky, who serves as the Boynton Knights director of coaching and player development, said the team has done exceptionally well.
“We are very proud of the girls for their hard work and determination to succeed,” Lubezky said. “The majority of the team grew up in our system and we are very happy to see them implement our style of play under pressure and in big games. Coach Jimmy and coach Fabian have done an amazing job developing the players and taking the group to the next level.”
The Knights U14 girls advanced to the 2021 Southern Regional Championship, which will take place in Greenville, South Carolina from June 18 to 24.
After enjoying success on the field and finishing in second place at the Florida State Cup, the team also qualified for the National League P.R.O. for the upcoming 2021-2022 season.
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“This allows the girls to test their skills against top-level competition from the best clubs around the United States,” Barrionuevo said.
The Knights U14 girls enjoyed success in league play and were among the premier teams in the Sunshine Conference. They won the Wellington Soccer Shootout Tournament this past January. They also had a challenging schedule by competing against higher-level U15 teams in older age groups.
“We were looking for the girls to continue with their development by playing better competition,” Barrionuevo said. “The girls responded and did a very good job.
The Knights U14 group includes Emery Scerbo, Addyson McCleary, Bianca Kaufmann, Sophia Adornato, Kayleigh Devery, Leah Reinoso, Mia Castano, Nicole Vasallo, Ava Vecchio, Danielle Rodriguez, Zarah Bissoon, Laura Williams, Brianna D’Amico, Calli Reid, Aine McCauley and Katelyn Pepe.
The Knights travel soccer club has several teams playing at a high level on the field. The girls’ U10 and boys’ U9 red team both recently won the Champions Cup. The girls’ U11 black won first place in the South Florida United playoffs in the U12 Division.