Plum youth soccer tournament to kick off despite waterlogged grounds
Plum Area Youth Soccer Club’s massive Kick-Off Classic soccer tournament is expected to go on as planned despite several storms flooding the fields.
This year marks its 22nd annual installment with 210 teams from across Western Pennsylvania and parts of West Virginia registered to play Aug. 23-25.
The main fields since its inception have been at Larry Mills Park off Fontana Drive in Plum.
An increase in teams and players over the years has caused the contest to expand onto other fields.
The borough and several other Allegheny County communities were ravaged by storms July 11 and late July 21 into July 22.
Tournament officials said they inspected Larry Mills Park and other fields earlier this month.
“None of our sites are unplayable,” club President Fred Lucas said Tuesday. “They’re all looking decent and good to play.”
John Anderson, Plum councilman and parks and recreation chairman, also confirmed public works crews completed repair efforts at Larry Mills in preparation for the tournament.
“It’s one of the biggest soccer tournaments around for younger ages,” Anderson said.
It’s expected to draw thousands to the borough.
“It’s amazing that the sport has taken off like it has,” said Lucas, a 1975 Plum High School graduate. “I didn’t know anyone playing soccer growing up.”
Games will be played at Larry Mills as well as Boyce Park along Pierson Run Road, O’Block Junior High School along Presque Isle Drive and Monroeville locations such as Penn Hall and CCAC Boyce Campus off Old Frankstown Road and Monroeville Community Park West off Tilbrook Road.
Games are also scheduled for Plum Creek Park off Ross Hollow Road. Its baseball fields there were destroyed, but the football fields were deemed playable.
Lucas said Kick-Off planning begins in October with tournament director Jamie Stewart.
It is a Pennsylvania West Soccer Association sanctioned event and recognized by the United States Soccer Federation.
More information about the tournament is available at plumkickoffclassic.com.
Michael DiVittorio is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Michael at 412-871-2367, [email protected] or via Twitter .