Barksdale Air Force Base, LA — Barksdale's football club recently participated in the annual Air Force soccer tournament known as the Defender's Cup, in San Antonio, Texas.
Stateside bases competed during the Defender's Cup for bragging rights and challenged themselves to a level of play more competitive than the local leagues and intramurals. Teams were broken down into eight groups of four teams. The pool of teams with Barksdale consisted of Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., Hurlburt Field Air Force Base, Fla., and Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio.
The weekend started late Friday afternoon, Aug. 30th, for Barksdale FC with a game against Cannon. After 60 minutes of aggressive play, Barksdale was shut-out.
Not to be disappointed by their initial loss, Barksdale showed up Saturday morning ready to play their second game against Wright-Patterson. After the first 30 minutes, Barksdale found themselves down 1-3 with the only goal coming from Tech. Sgt. David Brown, 26th Operational Weather Squadron. After a short halftime and some tactical adjustments, the team came back onto the field ready to play. Brown led the team to their comeback with two more goals in the second half tying the score 3-3, but Wright-Patterson was able to score a last minute goal handing Barksdale their second loss for the weekend.
Sunday morning kicked off the beginning of the knockout round, a single-elimination playoff to the championship. Barksdale played F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo., the only two Air Force Global Strike Command bases who participated in the tournament. The game was another closely fought battle but Barksdale didn't come out with a win.
After missing the Defender's Cup in 2012, the Barksdale FC scrambled to put together a team and enter into the tournament this year. With empty roster slots and a few practices under their belt, Barksdale didn't get the opportunity to develop team cohesion but left plenty of room to improve. Learning from the other teams at the tournament, Barksdale plans on having year-long practice to develop team cohesion and is looking for athletes to help fill out the roster.
The Barksdale FC welcomes all Air Force members and is currently holding open practices. If interested or for more information, contact the team coach, Staff Sgt. Juan Munoz, at email@example.com.