• 1st Lt. Alex Smith of 3rd Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), attacks the goal during the championship game here Aug. 15. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the 101st Sustainment Brigade 2-0 during the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer Game.

    Going for the goal

    1st Lt. Alex Smith of 3rd Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), attacks the goal during the championship game here Aug. 15. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the 101st Sustainment Brigade 2-0...

  • Pfc. Daniel Morgan of 3rd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) weaves through defenders during the championship game here Aug. 15. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the 101st Sustainment Brigade 2-0 during the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer Game.

    Weave through the defense

    Pfc. Daniel Morgan of 3rd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) weaves through defenders during the championship game here Aug. 15. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the 101st...

  • A group of 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) "Rakkasan" defenders converge on a 101st Sustainment Brigade player stopping him from scoring during the championship game here Aug. 15. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the 101st Sustainment Brigade 2-0 during the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer Game.

    Putting up a strong defense

    A group of 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) "Rakkasan" defenders converge on a 101st Sustainment Brigade player stopping him from scoring during the championship game here Aug. 15. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the...

  • 1st Lt. Brady Juelson of 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) passes up field during the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer Game.  1st Lt. Juelson scored both of the Rakkasans' goals during the 3rd Brigade Combat Team's 2-0 win over the 101st Sustainment Brigade here Aug. 15.

    Passing the ball

    1st Lt. Brady Juelson of 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) passes up field during the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer Game. 1st Lt. Juelson scored both of the Rakkasans'...

  • Col. Andrew Poppas, Deputy Commander for Operations, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), awards a gold medal to Pfc. Rukman Gurung of 3rd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the 101st Sustainment Brigade 2-0 during the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer Game.

    Rakkasans take the gold

    Col. Andrew Poppas, Deputy Commander for Operations, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), awards a gold medal to Pfc. Rukman Gurung of 3rd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team. The 3rd Brigade Combat Team defeated the...

  • Members of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) "Rakkasan," show off their gold "Olympic-style" after defeating the 101st Sustainment Brigade 2-0 in the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer game. The Rakkasans dominated the 25-minute second half, scoring their second goal and never looking back.

    Showing off the winning spirit

    Members of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) "Rakkasan," show off their gold "Olympic-style" after defeating the 101st Sustainment Brigade 2-0 in the 2012 Week of the Eagle Championship Soccer game. The Rakkasans...

"The guys have been practicing hard during the last couple of weeks getting ready for this," said Maj. Diogo Tavares, the deputy squadron commander for the 1st Squadron, 75th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault). "We have been figuring out who plays where, trying to develop some good chemistry."

The matches were held at Fryar Stadium, Fort Campbell's high school football venue. Each match consisted of two 20-minute halves with a five-minute halftime. The break gave the coaches the chance to give their team a pep talk, saying what they did strong and what they need to work on.

"Midfield, I need you to get back a little bit," said Staff Sgt. Warren Bryson of Troop B, 1st Squadron, 75th Cavalry Regiment and coach for the Strike Soccer team, during his half time speech. "Challenge the ball, challenge the ball. They are getting past the 50 and no one is challenging them."

While the games would prove to be physically exhausting, one team would come out on top. The team from 3rd Brigade Combat Team, Team Rakkasan, would shut out three teams to claim first place in the tournament.

"It was an extremely rewarding three weeks and we came together as a team and gelled like we had been playing together for years," said Sgt. 1st Class James Weaver, a battle captain with Rakkasan's 1st Squadron, 33rd Cavalry Regiment and also the team coach. "We knew we had a good chance of making it out of the first round and after our first match, our confidence grew and we knew we were the team to beat."

The teams that played against the Rakkasan team respected their talent and level of play. The matches were physical and demanding which made for flared tempers and some yelling, but at the end of the match everyone shook hands and went home content with their performance.

"I am proud to know that the team we lost to went on to win it all," said Tavares of the Strike's loss to the Rakkasans. "It is always hard to lose, but to know that it was to the championship team makes it just a little easier. I am glad to see them victorious."

Page last updated Thu August 16th, 2012 at 14:46