Youth fall league opens tomorrow

NMIFA technical director Kiyoshi Sekiguchi explains passing and control positions during a coaching workshop for the fall season of the youth league last Saturday at the Koblerville Elementary School cafeteria. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Nine games in the competitive division will be played in the opening of the 2016 NMIFA Youth Fall League this Saturday at four different fields.

Over at the Oleai Sports Complex for the boys U17 division, Matansa Football Club will have its season debut in the 9am against Paire FC, while at 10:40am, MP United FC will take on Tan Holdings FC. Kanoa FC completes the field and drew a bye in the opening week. The boys U17 games will be played in two 40-minute halves.

In the girls U15 division, matches will take place at the San Antonio Elementary School Field with Shirley’s FC battling MP United in the curtain-raiser at 1:30pm and Tan Holdings facing Matansa in the second tiff at 3pm. Kanoa also has a team in the division and will have its season opener next Saturday when it duels Tan Holdings at 1:30pm. Players in the girls U15 division will see action in two 35-minute halves.

The boys U14 age group has the same game duration as the girls U15’s and will feature six teams. In the first game at 1:30pm, Shirley’s FC will square off against Matansa, while in the second match at 3pm, Tan Holdings will challenge Kanoa. Paire and MP United will close out the opening week as they collide in the 4:30pm tiff. All games are scheduled at the Koblerville Elementary School Field.

Over at the Hopwood Junior High School Field, Paire FC and Tan Holdings will open the hostilities in the co-ed U12A division when they cross path, beginning at 12:30pm at Pitch A. At Pitch B at the same time, MP United 1 will meet Kanoa. MP United 2 got a bye in Week 1 and will start its campaign next Saturday against Paire. Games in the boys U12A division will be played in two 30-minute halves.

Meanwhile, three other divisions will have their separate competitions.

In the co-ed U12B (non-competitive), eight teams are entered and all four games in the opening week will be played at the Hopwood pitch, starting at 1:50pm. The pairings in Week 1 are Shirley’s vs MP United; Tan Holdings vs Matansa; Paire vs Kanoa 2; and Kanoa 1 vs Southern United Armada FC, which is the newest member of the Northern Mariana Islands Football Association family. The co-ed U12B division’s matches have two 25-minute halves.

Southern United also has a team in the co-ed U10 age group and it will collide against Shirley’s FC at the Hopwood pitch at 3pm. Three other games will be played in the division with Kanoa battling Matansa, MP United 1 squaring off against Paire, and MP United 2 taking on Tan Holdings FC. MP United 3 is also entered in the age group, which will be played only for 40 minutes.

Nine teams will also play in the co-ed U8 division with MP United fielding three teams to join Shirley’s, Kanoa, Tan Holdings, Paire, Matansa, and Southern United. The pairings in tomorrow’ opening week are as follows: Shirley’s vs Southern United; Kanoa vs Matansa; MP United 1 vs Paire; and MP United 2 vs Tan Holdings. Games will take place, too at the Hopwood pitch at 4pm.

In related news, over 40 coaches and club officials attended NMIFA’s coaching workshop at the Koblerville Elementary School.

NMIFA technical director and CNMI Men’s National coach Kiyoshi Sekiguchi led the seminar, which aimed at preparing coaches for this year’s fall league. The workshop covered theoretical pointers and goalkeeping coaching (practical session).

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.

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