“It’s a fun tournament,” Sullivan said. “It’s the first time here for our team, and we’re having a good time.”
Salem Thunder goalie Adam Pszenny proudly wore a medal around his neck after his U-12 team worked hard to earn a tie in Sunday’s action. The Sportsmanship Medal is given to one player on each team after games. One of his teammates said Pszenny had been “awesome.”
The Thunder went all the way to the finals before losing to Woburn on penalty kicks.
“This is one of the best tournaments we go to,” said Cheryl Pszenny, Adam’s mother. “They do a great job running it and everything is in one place.”
Having all games in one location is something Silvio Albano appreciates. The veteran coach had two teams entered: Hotshots Too at the U-12 level and Hotshots III girls at U-10.
“I’ve been here since 5:30 (Sunday) morning with the rest of the crew,” Albano said. “We set up the fields and get everything ready for the games. Between my two teams, I was going all weekend, but I love working with the kids. There’s nothing better.”
The hardworking volunteers did such a great job that shortly after the playoffs ended yesterday afternoon, there was no trace of the thousands of people that had filled the area all weekend.
“Only some footprints will remain,” said Mike Muse, U-14 coordinator.
“We have a lot of volunteers who work very hard to make this happen. We have between 20 and 30 high school kids doing their community service, 30 or more adult volunteers, and our 16 board members. It takes a nice effort by all of them.”
At the concession stand where Muse worked, colorful sweatshirts and T-shirts with a nifty logo depicting the ship Columbus sailed were on display and for sale. The T-shirts with the full front logo were a big hit Saturday when the temperature was in the upper 70s, but by Sunday and Monday cooler weather arrived, making sweatshirts a popular item.