The city of Wheeling boasts the preeminent travel soccer program in northern West Virginia and arguably the whole state in the FC Wheeling United travel soccer club. FC Wheeling United has been producing quality youth soccer players since 1987. Travel soccer is a year round endeavor for most Wheeling players with pre-season training beginning in August and the spring season ending in early June. In between, the young players compete in a three-month fall season which dominates September and October and ends in early November; winter training then picks up in January with the Spring season starting in mid-March.
FC Wheeling United is a member of the West Virginia Soccer Association, and its teams compete in a variety of leagues, tournaments and West Virginia state competitions. Due to the club’s proximity to Pittsburgh, FC Wheeling United’s primary league is the Pennsylvania West travel soccer league which has competing clubs mostly from the Pittsburgh area but does have teams from as far east as State College and as far north as Erie. During the fall season FC Wheeling’s primary outlet for competition is the PA West league and whatever regional tournaments its teams may choose to enter.
FC Wheeling United finished the spring 2014 campaign with three state championships and two runner-up finishes at the West Virginia Open Cup in Barboursville. FC Wheeling’s Under 14 Girls team handily defeated Fury Wheeling, a team of high school players, 3-0 in the finals to win its fourth state championship. FC Wheeling’s Under 12 Girls team had a great come from behind 3-1 victory over Fury Morgantown to collect its first state championship, and FC Wheeling’s Under 11 Boys team defeated the WVSC Rowdies out of Huntington to collect their first state title. FC Wheeling’s Under 10 Girls and Under 14 Boys made strong showings at the Open Cup as well but came up short in the finals to finish as the runner-up in their respective divisions.
With these state titles under its belt, FC Wheeling United came into the fall 2014 season with some of its strongest teams to date. This fall, FC Wheeling fielded six boys and seven girls travel soccer teams. Four of these teams, the U14 Girls, the U13 Girls, the U12 Girls and the U11 Boys Black team, compete at the highest level of travel soccer in PA West.
The U14 Girls just finished their PA West season with a record of 5-1-1 and a solid second place finish in their league. Their late season 3-2 loss to first place Upper St. Clair kept this team out of the top spot, but this team is perfectly poised to top the table in the Spring and take home some West Virginia trophies as well.
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The U13 Girls stand at 5-1-1 with one game remaining in their Pa West season. This team won the South Hills Kick-off Tournament in August and just defeated 3-2 the previously unbeaten Hampton team to give it a shot with one more win to capture their second straight PA West divisional title.
The U12 Girls finished their PA WEST season with a record of 5-1-1 and a second place finish in their division. This team tied division winner South Fayette 1-1 in the last week of the season to secure their runner-up status. This was the U12 Girls first foray into PA West’s highest division, and their results speak to the commitment of their players and head coach Barry Christmas.
The U11 Boys Black team finished their PA West season with a record of 2-4-1 for a fifth place finish in their division. This FC Wheeling team is brand new one and is the first season all these players have been playing together. Despite this, they undertook the challenge of playing at PA West’s highest travel soccer level and are ready to make some noise in the Spring season.
Four FC Wheeling teams, the U11 Girls, the U10 Girls Black team, the U14 Boys, and the U12 Boys, compete in the second division of PA West travel soccer. The U11 Girls finished the Fall at 4-2-1 in PA West for a fourth place finish in their division. The U10 Girls Black team finished 5-2-0 for a fourth place finish as well. The U12 Boys ended the campaign 4-2-1 for a strong third place finish.
The remaining four teams, the U9 Girls, the U10 Girls White team, the U11 Boys White and the U9 Boys Black and White teams, are brand new teams and compete at the introductory level of PA West travel soccer. In their first seasons together the U10 Girls White and U11 Boys White teams finished with respectable records of 3-2-2 and 3-4-0, respectively, and will be looking to finish near the top of their tables in the Spring. FC Wheeling’s three U9 teams are playing a full year up in their first season in travel soccer and competing strongly. They ended their seasons with a combined record of 9-12-3 while playing teams comprised mostly of players a year older and a head taller.
FC Wheeling United has six teams traveling to the Madison Soccer Invitation in Madison, Ohio, on Nov. 8 and 9 to conclude their fall seasons. The weather for this tournament is always unpredictable. FC Wheeling had a first and second place finish at the event last year which features travel soccer teams from northern Ohio. We look forward to reporting this year’s results in the near future.