The Bozeman U-11 boys team was in Salt Lake City, Utah this weekend to play in a soccer tournament when they found out they would perform the traditional kids/player walk out with the United States team during the United States vs Cuba Gold Cup match.
Coach David Priestley said when the players found out they were "mesmorized and more than thrilled. They almost lost sight of the tournament in anticipation of doing the walkout. It's the biggest honor a youth player can have as they do it at all of the highest levels."
Priestley was contacted shortly after the team arrived after the Cup Event personnel heard off the small team coming to town. ""It turned out they were interested because we were a smaller market. We were from Montana and we had traveled there specifically to see the game and to play in the tournament so they thought it was a cool story."
The U-11 team went 0-1-3 at the tournament with a draw. Coach Priestley says they were looking to play bigger and stronger opponents so this was a good experience for the kids seeing those bigger market teams. I asked what he hopes his players walk away with and he says he hopes they look at countries like Costa Rica and Belize, smaller countries that have players reach the top level from their work ethic and play their hearts out.
"I would say the most lasting thing is an athlete from anywhere no matter how big or small the town is you can reach the highest level if you're willing to put in the work. A determined hard working athlete from anywhere in the world can reach the highest level."