Howard History

20 days with soccer trophy

August 26, 2007

As reported Aug. 25, 1982, in The Sun:

Columbia Kick coach Rudy Storch is not about to let the team trophy - symbol of under-16 North American soccer supremacy - collect dust for the next 365 days in a shopping mall.

"Each of my 18 players will get to keep our trophy in his bedroom for 20 days," said Storch. "After all, they are the ones who practiced five days a week since February to reach our goal. It will mean more to them that way." After proving to be the best among over 5,000 teams in this country and Canada, the Kick focused international attention on the youth program in Columbia.

Storch, a professor of ancient studies at UMBC, guided his traveling squad to a pair of titles last week in Vancouver, British Columbia.

First, the Kick won the United States crown, called the Niotis Cup, by defeating teams from Texas and California. Chris Weilminster's three-goal hat trick led a 4-1 victory over Texas before Steve Nelson's goal beat the Upland (Calif.) Astros in the 1-0 finale.

With a 91-9-4 record the past three years, and winner of Eastern Regional title over the July 4 weekend in Binghamton, N.Y., the Kick rode striker Rodney Long's hat trick and eight saves by goalkeeper Chris Attridge to a 4-1 triumph over the Southwest Marine Dolphins of Vancouver.

The Kick, whose players are members of the high school squads at Centennial, Hammond, Oakland Mills, Wilde Lake and Severna Park, became the second Maryland team to win the United Commercial Travelers Cup as champions of North America.

[Paul McCardell, Sun researcher]

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