Home / Sports / Oceanside’s SoCal Legacy Victorious at Largest Beach Soccer Tournament in the World
The 2017 U16 Surf Division North American Sand Soccer Champions from left-to-right: Justin Ricketts, Connor Gillespie, Andrew Torres, Alexis Trujillo, Israel Ramirez, Eiko Rodriguez, Antonio Chavez, Mateo Citron, Gonzalo Marquez, Lars Ecklund, and Coach Steve Citron.

Oceanside’s SoCal Legacy Victorious at Largest Beach Soccer Tournament in the World

Wins West and East Coast Titles 3 Weeks Apart

Photos: Kristi Citron
Click on images below to enlarge photos

Virginia Beach VA— Just three weeks after winning Oceanside’s Beach Soccer Championships, the largest sand soccer tournament on the West Coast, SoCal Legacy headed across the US to compete in the 24th Annual North American Sand Soccer Championships (NASSC), the largest beach soccer tournament on the East Coast and in the world.

With over 1,100 teams, competing on over 60 fields, spanning over 25 city blocks of prime oceanfront real estate, on over a mile and a half of golden sand beaches, this “World Cup” equivalent of an international beach soccer competition is hard to miss, attracting teams from around the globe, including nearly 20 states and countries from as far away as Africa, Portugal, Germany, Brazil, Norway, the Caribbean, and Canada’s Northwest Territories.  “For those that love this sport, it’s absolute beach soccer nirvana”, said Steve Citron, head coach for SoCal Legacy, arguably one of the best youth beach soccer teams to come out of Oceanside, “We have played in over 20 tournaments and this event is nothing short of incredible, there are beach soccer fields for as far as the eye can see.”

The NASSC is enormous with beach soccer fields for as far as the eye can see. This is a view facing North, from the 8th floor balcony of a hotel on the famous boardwalk, about one-third of the way up from the South end of the event. Matches are played from sunrise to sunset and games at the Pro Arena are played well into the evening as it has lighting and is surrounded by stadium seating.

Planning for this event began in December of 2016, after Legacy won their second consecutive Major Beach Soccer (MBS) National Title in Clearwater Beach, Florida.  Playing out of the SoCal Beach Soccer Club, a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to teaching and promoting the sport of beach soccer, the team had already tapped out many funding sources to reach the MBS Nationals in December.  “We had some success with our various fundraisers and GoFundMe campaigns, but we needed to bridge the gap to make it to the NASSC,” said Citron, “and that is when Troy Clifton, the VP of Business Development from All-Pro Tactical, the lead sponsor of the tournament and a provider of high performance sports gear and military equipment bags and backpacks, contacted us and offered to pay our entry fees.”  The generosity of an East Coast, Virginia-based company cleared the way for SoCal Legacy, the only youth team from California, to make it to the Mecca of all beach soccer tournaments, to represent their city, community, and state to see just how far they could go.

SoCal Legacy at the All-Pro Tactical booth in Virginia. All-Pro Tactical provided uniforms,
backpacks, and paid for Legacy’s entry fees to help the team make it to the NASSC to compete.

SoCal Legacy defends a dangerous cross into the middle from Sons of Beaches.
From left-to-right: Gonzalo Marquez, Andrew Torres, Connor Gillespie, and Justin Ricketts.

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