Youth Soccer Region Championships coming to Lancaster area

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The 2012 US Youth Soccer Region I (East) Championships presented by the National Guard, to be played June 28 – July 3, will provide an estimated economic impact of more than $15 million to the Lancaster, Pa., area.

Local restaurants, hotels, retail stores and others will benefit from the more than 4,500 players, coaches, teams and tournament officials, who also bring along their families to the six-day tournament. Visitors to the Lancaster, Pa., area will book an estimated 10,000 room nights at area hotels.

The top 260 Boys and Girls US Youth Soccer teams from Region I, including at least 16 teams from the host Eastern Pennsylvania State Soccer Association, will compete at the Hempfield High School Complex, Franklin and Marshall College and Classics Park.

'The Lancaster area is looking forward to hosting the thousands of visitors of the 2012 US Youth Soccer Region I Championships after such a successful year in 2011,' said Chris Branscome, Eastern Pennsylvania CEO and local organizing committee chair. 'We look to build on last year's event and are committed to again providing an unmatched experience for all involved in this prestigious event.'

The US Youth Soccer Region I Championships will feature top teams in the Under-12 through Under-19 age groups and begin on June 28, with opening ceremonies at Clipper Stadium in Lancaster, Pa. Round robin games will take place Friday, June 29 through Sunday, July 1, with semifinal matches Monday, July 2. The US Youth Soccer Region I Champions will be crowned following final games Tuesday, July 3.

US Youth Soccer State Champions and select wildcards in the U-12 through U-19 Boys and Girls age groups from 15 State Associations, including from host Eastern Pennsylvania State Soccer Association, will participate in the event. The other state associations represented include Connecticut, Delaware, Eastern New York, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York West, Pennsylvania West, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and West Virginia.

Regional winners of the U-14 through U-19 Boys and Girls brackets will earn a berth to the 2012 US Youth Soccer National Championships presented by the National Guard July 24-29 at Manchester Meadows in Rock Hill, S.C.

The dates and locations for the 2012 US Youth Soccer Regional Championships and the 2012 US Youth Soccer National Championships are:

US Youth Soccer Region I (East) Championships | Lancaster, Pa.

Classics Park Soccer Complex, Hempfield High School, Elizabethtown College

Opening Ceremony: June 28 | Clipper Stadium, Lancaster, Pa.

Round Robin: June 29-July 1 Semis: July 2

Finals: July 3 Teams: 260 Age Group: U12 – U19

US Youth Soccer Region II (Midwest) Championships | Saginaw, Mi.

Saginaw Township Soccer Complex

Registration: June 22 Round Robin: June 23-25

Semis: June 26 Finals: June 27

Teams: 212 Age Group: U13 – U19

US Youth Soccer Region III (South) Championships | Greenville, S.C.

Opening Ceremony: June 14 MeSA Soccer Complex

Round Robin: June 15-17 Quarters: June 18 U14, U15, U16

Semis/Quarters: June 19 Semifinals U13 & U19/ Quarters U17 & U18

Finals/Semis: June 20 Finals U13 & U19 / Semifinals U14-U18

Finals: June 21 Finals U14-U18 Teams: 200

Age Group: U13 – U19 US Youth Soccer Region IV (West) Championships | Phoenix, Ariz.

Reach 11 Sports Complex Round Robin: June 18-20

Quarters: June 22 Semis: June 23

Finals: June 24 Teams: 248 Age Group: U12 – U19

US Youth Soccer National Championships | Rock Hill, S.C.

Manchester Meadows Player Luncheon: July 24

Round Robin: July 25-27 Finals: July 28-29

Total Number of Teams: 60 Age Group: U14 – 19

For more information on the US Youth Soccer National Championship Series, visit http://championships.usyouthsoccer.org, the online home for the US Youth Soccer National Championship Series, providing the latest in news, information and more.

About the US Youth Soccer National Championship Series – The US Youth Soccer National Championship Series provides more than 10,000 teams from US Youth Soccer's 55 State Associations the opportunity to showcase their abilities against the best in the nation while emphasizing teamwork, discipline and fair play. The yearlong competition begins with over 185,000 players in the US Youth Soccer State Championships. These champions and selected wildcard teams, through US Youth Soccer Regional Leagues, advance to compete in one of four the US Youth Soccer Regional Championships. Champions (U-14 through U-19) from each regional event advance to the US Youth Soccer National Championships. The Under-15 through 17 Boys and Girls age groups have two teams representative of the US Youth Soccer National League, in which the top two teams in each gender age group earn a direct path to the national championships. Overall the National Championship Series provides top collegiate coaches with the premier stage to identify and scout the most coveted players in the country. For more information, visit http://championships.usyouthsoccer.org.

About the United States Youth Soccer Association (US Youth Soccer) – US Youth Soccer - 'The Game for ALL Kids!®' is the largest youth sports organization in the country and largest member of the United States Soccer Federation, the governing body of soccer in the United States. US Youth Soccer registers more than 3 million players annually, ages 5 to 19, and over 900,000 administrators, coaches and volunteers in 55 member State Associations. US Youth Soccer programs provide a fun, safe and healthy environment for players at every level of the game. For more information, visit www.USYouthSoccer.org.

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