Nice weather draws big crowds to Barrington tournament

Nearly 100 soccer teams visit Barrington for annual soccer tournament

BY MANUEL C. “MANNY” CORREIRA
Posted 11/8/19

Unlike last year, when heavy rain and poor field conditions forced the cancellation of the Barrington Youth Soccer Association Invitational Tournament, this year’s 39th annual edition went off …

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Nice weather draws big crowds to Barrington tournament

Nearly 100 soccer teams visit Barrington for annual soccer tournament

Posted

Unlike last year, when heavy rain and poor field conditions forced the cancellation of the Barrington Youth Soccer Association Invitational Tournament, this year’s 39th annual edition went off in perfect late-fall weather conditions, much to the delight of all those association members who worked so diligently to get this tournament off the ground.

“We had just under 100 teams take part in this year’s event,” noted veteran tournament director Willie Gempp.  "We had teams from all over New England, with a good number of them from Connecticut. The field conditions were certainly a lot better than they were a year ago.”

BYSA President Steve DeBoth said he was pleased with this year's tournament.

"It was a great couple days of soccer," said Mr. DeBoth. "We were gifted with gorgeous weather, which has a huge impact on how people feel about the weekend. Last year's rain-fueled cancellation caused a few teams to not come back this year which is pretty common, so we were just shy of 100 teams this weekend. All told there were about 1,500 kids and probably 5,000 people or more participating in this year's tournament.

"From start to finish, it ran pretty well. We're looking forward to expanding the tournament in the future as additional field space comes back on-line. I can't thank our board and volunteers enough for helping keep this annual Barrington tradition going. It's a lot of work and a lot of fun."

The tournament is a large undertaking for the local youth sports league. Officials estimated that nearly 1,500 youth soccer players and 5,000 people in total visited Barrington for the tournament. The event impacts the local business community also, as players and their families visit local shops and restaurants throughout the weekend. 

Mr. Gempp retiring

This is reportedly Mr. Gempp’s final year with the association as he plans to retire on Dec. 31 after 16 years as club director. His tenure with the group is well-documented and the amount of time and effort he has put in year after year running this tournament cannot be over-emphasized enough, said officials. Stefanie Caliri will become the new BYSA Club Director.

Utilizing 14 fields in and around town, the 2019 BYSA Invitational was termed a great success as youngsters, both boys and girls in various age groups, competed for trophies and other honors.

Tournament officials emphasized the benefits of the tournament.

Mr. DeBoth offered this remark: “In an age with ever more reasons for children to stay in the house and stare at screens, we get them out in the actual three-dimensional world, learning the value of teamwork and sportsmanship; how to lose with dignity and how to win with class. We help them carve out real life moments in their ever more virtual world, and these will be the memories they cherish.”

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