Minnesota teams won seven championships at the Schwan's USA Cup Weekend Tournament in Blaine, which pitted over 1,000 teams from 17 states and 17 countries against one another.
The largest youth soccer tournament in the western hemisphere saw record turnout, and the event generated an estimated $20.4 million in economic impact.
The Minnesota Thunder Academy qualified for five championship matches on Sunday and went 3-2 in those games. The St. Croix Academy qualified for four, securing a 3-1 record by the end. The Dakota Rev also won the girls' 19, bringing the Minnesota championship tally to seven.
There were four special, invitation-only tournaments in the boys' and girls' U14 and U16 divisions, and the "Super Elite division" offered some of the highest level of soccer seen at the weekend games.
The 10-day tournament will resume again on Tuesday, and with hot temperatures in the forecast, organizers are ready to modify the schedule to make sure the players stay in fighting form.
Extra water breaks and shorter periods will be considered as the weather heats up, and the hockey arena will be made available to help players and fans keep cool during the muggy mid-week matches.
The tournament is the only youth match-up of its size in the world which holds all its games on a single contiguous campus with more than 48 fields. It's also known for its ambitious program of off-the-field activities, including:
- An Olympic-style opening ceremony
- A daily video show
- Live webcasting of selected games
- Social and educational activities for the players and their families
- Tours to major Twin Cities tourist destinations, such as Valleyfair, the Science
Museum of Minnesota, the Mall of America, and Bunker Beach water park.