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Sports jinx strikes Sanibel Youth Soccer squads

By Staff | Nov 11, 2009

Sports fans have long been aware of the Sport’s Illustrated cover jinx, which has been responsible for the fall of many a great team. A similar jinx seems to have struck Sanibel Youth Soccer this week.

Last week’s local headlines sang the praises of Portugal and Brazil, in the U-10 and U-12 divisions, respectively, and declared that each was the team to beat. While neither suffered a crushing defeat, they were both humbled as their opponents battled hard and earned well-deserved ties against the two leaders.

In the U-10 division, Brazil came out with a strong defensive effort against the Portuguese side and was able to hold them to just one goal while managing one of their own. The result was the aforementioned 1-1 tie brought on by the local jinx.

In the nightcap, Holland held off a hard-charging Italian team and moved into second place overall.

In U-12, it was Italy who took advantage of the spell as they battled Brazil to a 1-1 tie in another hard-fought defensive struggle. Sam Roberts and Joey Aulino scored for their teams but no one was able to break through the strong defenses for a game-winner.

The second U-12 game was a high scoring affair between Jamaica and England. Jamaica came into the game having just one tie to their credit, but they took it to England early and often and scored a total of eight goals the most by any team in the league this year. The final was 8-5 in favor of the islanders.

In U-15, Ireland’s coach Julie Neal, a local publisher, used her editorial connections to keep her team out of last week’s headlines and thus avoided the jinx. Ireland again prevailed over Brazil in a game that was tied 2-2 until the waning minutes. Ramsey Fisher scored on a free kick from the edge of the penalty area and followed up with a breakaway goal moments later to secure a last minute 4-2 win for the powerhouse Irish.