FC Ballyhoo’s 2007 boys team is coming home to York County with a national trophy in tow.
FC Ballyhoo beat NCRT Blue of North Carolina 5-1 in the 16U Boys final of the US Youth Soccer National Presidents Cup in Wichita, Kansas on Tuesday afternoon to cap off the club’s first national title.
Noah Brady led the way with a hat trick and Maddox Snyder and Carson Spangler both added goals for Ballyhoo, which took a 3-0 lead into halftime they wouldn’t relinquish.
Tuesday’s final was Ballyhoo’s fifth game in five days. The team opened the competition on Friday with a loss but won out in the final four games to become the first boys team from Eastern PA to win the trophy since 2018.
“The boys did what they always do, they came out and got the job done,” said head coach Bret Altimore. “It’s a grind, playing five games in five days, but they stepped up and just couldn’t be denied.”
Going into the final - they advanced on penalties after coming back from an early deficit to tie 1-1 on Monday - Altimore was more than satisfied with the performance and called making it to Tuesday a win before they took the field.
“We never talk about winning,” he said. “Winning is a byproduct of doing things right. If we create our opportunities and finish our opportunities and defend the way I know we can defend, winning will take care of itself.”
While Brady’s hat trick was a highlight of the final, few plays demonstrated the tenacity of the team than a clearance from defender Jackson Miller on a goal-scoring chance for NCRT that forced him out of the game with an injury. Brady stepped up to fill his spot to see the game out.
Going down the roster, Altimore could pick out multiple other moments where players stepped up, like Snyder scoring the equalizer and KJ Lavetan volunteering to take the decisive penalty kick on Monday, Logan Sumner making saves and starting counter attacks and guest players Spangler and Drew Jones from Lancaster Elite contributing.
“We don’t have any superstars on our team; everybody is good,” Altimore said. “It’s a mentality too. They’ll sell out; they’ll do whatever it takes.”
Tuesday’s final marked the official end of a decorated season for the York County team.
In addition to going unbeaten in their league (EDP), they won an Eastern Pennsylvania Indoor Cup title in the winter, the state Presidents Cup in May and made it all the way to the final of the Eastern Presidents Cup in Conshohocken to qualify for the national event in Kansas.
Now they return home national champs.
They are the 27th team from Eastern PA to win the national competition, which celebrated its 15th anniversary this year and the first boys team since VE Green Gunners to do so. Two girls teams - Irony Valley United Thorns and North Union United Wave - won it in 2022.