Tuesday, September 18, 2012
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Route 66 Shootout dubbed 'an incredible weekend'

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[September 18, 2012]  Over the weekend the Lincoln Futbol Club hosted its first Route 66 Shootout tournament.

The weekend brought more than 40 soccer teams with their family and fans to Lincoln for Saturday and Sunday.

According to Tim Stuckey, who is a coach and was on the ground floor of the creation of the club and fields, the club has dubbed the Shootout as an "incredible success."

"We had an incredible weekend. We received so many compliments from the teams attending," Stuckey said Monday evening. "They complimented our fields, our parking, its closeness to the restaurants and businesses, everything. It really went so much better than we could have hoped, and since people had a great time, we are very confident that the tournament will grow next year.

"This is exactly what we told the city council would happen if they allowed us to use their land wisely, and we'd like to again express appreciation for Mayor Snyder and the city council for ‘seeing the vision' in the fall of 2009."

At Monday evening's city council meeting, Alderwoman Jonie Tibbs was proudly wearing her Route 66 Shootout souvenir T-shirt. She said she had attended a portion of the tournament and was really impressed with the fields the club has built on city land.

She said the parking was good, and the arrangement of the various fields was nice.

"It just all fits together so well," she commented.

Mayor Keith Snyder had also paid a visit to the tournament. He told the council that he had spoken to a lot of folks who were really pleased with the soccer complex.

He also noted that local motels were full this weekend. He said he knew it was due in part to the soccer tournament, but also to the Railsplitter Festival and possibly also to the volleyball tournament in Mount Pulaski.

Marty Neitzel interjected that having sports activities in Lincoln was good for the city all the way around.

In October of 2009 Dr. Dru Hauter came to the city with a request to use city property behind the new Wal-Mart Supercenter for a soccer complex. He talked about the merits of the club and its benefit to young people in the area. He brought to light for council and the community the fact that soccer is a sport that is growing in popularity in the United States, and that there were young people, both boys and girls, who were interested in becoming part of a home club.

Over the next couple of months, Hauter and the council worked to come to an agreement on the property. The land, which amounted to 27 acres, was then being rented out to a local farmer for crop production.

Hauter asked the city to let the club lease the property. He said the club would start using only 12 acres but would take responsibility for the maintenance of all 27.

In the end, the city voted unanimously to lease the property to the club for $1 per year. The provisions of the lease left the club responsible for all improvements, which they accepted happily.

In November of 2010, Hauter returned to the council, as they had requested in the lease agreement, with a report of the work that had been done at the complex.

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Then this spring the club had games at the complex. Stuckey commented then on the work that had been done at the fields. He said the project had started out as a one-man operation, with Hauter doing almost all of the work. He came out to the fields with a tractor and worked to level the areas, then took care of seeding the grass.

However, Stuckey said it didn't take long for parents to start getting involved. He remembered time and again when a parent would get on a lawn mower and mow the entire time their kid was at practice. He said then that the parents of the Lincoln team members were 100 percent behind the club and all gave their time to the project as they were able to.

Monday, Stuckey also said that the club had the support of local businesses, especially during the shootout. He said each field had a business sponsor.

He said that on behalf of the club, he wanted to recognize and thank each one of them. He provided a list of all the sponsors, saying: "We are very grateful for their help."

The list of sponsors is as follows:

Field sponsors:

  • Field 1: Area Disposal

  • Field 2: Prairie Engineers of Illinois

  • Field 3: R.P. Lumber Co.

  • Field 4: D & D Complete Sewer Service & Portables

  • Field 5: Sugar Creek Orthodontics

  • Field 6: Harold Goodman Trucking

Tent sponsors:

  • Medical tent: ALMH, Memorial SportsCare

  • Referee tent: Culligan Water Systems

Friends of Lincoln FC:

  • Ag-Land FS Inc. -- Lincoln

  • Cross Brothers Implement Inc.

  • Scott Goodman Backhoe Service

  • Culver's

  • Warren and Kurt Wendlandt

And finally, last but far from being least important, the Lincoln teams did well for their first big tournament. With more than 40 teams on the fields in a variety of age brackets, the Lincoln U9 team finished third in their bracket, going 1-2.

The U10 went 0-3 in their bracket, but narrowly missed two victories, dropping their second game 1-0 and their third game 2-1. The U12 also played well, narrowly missing a couple of victories. The U14 went 1-2 in their bracket, finishing in fourth place.


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