EDINBURG, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The boys on local soccer team FC Dallas RGV Elite 2008 won the under-13 championship at the Copita Alianza, a national tournament held in Arizona in early May. 

“It feels great to represent the Valley,” said goalkeeper Gael Guerra. “Not many kids are able to say they’re national champions, especially from Valley.”

The team is made up of kids from across the Rio Grande Valley. 

“Started off down here in Valley winning tournament after tournament,” said fellow goalkeeper Juan Carlos Lozano. “We realized we had a lot of potential, so we decided to go up and won in Round Rock.”

Their triumph in Round Rock earned them a spot at the tournament in Arizona. 

Most of the boys on the team have been playing together for a handful of years. 

“We know how we play,” Guerra said. “The chemistry, it helps a lot. If you don’t know your teammates, you’re not going to play well with them.”

Their experience helped them stay composed in the final of the Copita Alianza in which they beat a team from Oxnard, California 1-0. The game was tied 0-0 at halftime. 

“Our coach gave us a motivated pep talk,” said defender Diego Hernandez. “Our friend Hector Veliz scored. We were all happy and passionate about that.”

The team will test itself against international competition in the Dallas Cup in 2023.