Target USA Cup

Last summer, the Target USA Cup at the National Sports Center in Blane had 1,152 teams from 22 states and 20 countries competing. But this year's tourney scheduled for July, which is the largest in the U.S., was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The largest soccer tournament in the United States has been sidelined for the first time in 35 years.

The 2020 Target USA Cup, scheduled for July at the National Sports Center in Blaine, has been canceled due to the corona virus pandemic, as well as all tournaments and leagues produced by the NSC until August.

The NSC was scheduled to host four youth soccer tournaments in the next two months, along with an adult hockey league and a variety of other programs.

A NSC press release stated "the decision was made to ensure the health and safety of our players, coaches, referees, employees, volunteers, and fans."

The Target USA Cup had 1,152 teams from 22 states and 20 countries competing last summer.

“For 35 years, Target USA CUP has been known for being much more than just a soccer tournament," Todd Johnson, the NSC's executive director, said in the release. "The international flare from players and referees, the variety of activities around campus during the week, pin trading and our opening ceremonies event all help to create our one-of-a-kind experience.

"In addition to safety, we knew that it would be impossible for us to create an event with the caliber of activities and offerings that our players have come to look forward to year after year."

The NSC will continue to rent its facilities to use for practice and training during the months of June and July. Victory Links Golf Course on the NSC campus will continue to be open to the public for play as well.

"Our team has created a safe operations policy and we will continue to work with outside partners to ensure that athletes can use our facilities in a safe manner," Johnson said.

The NSC campus covers nearly 700 acres and includes 50 grass multi-use athletic fields, the eight-sheet Super Rink, the golf course, a 5,500 seat stadium, the indoor Sports Hall with an artificial turf field, the Sport Expo Center featuring basketball and volleyball courts and a 180-bed residence hall.

The NSC is also home to the Minnesota United FC of Major League Soccer.

More information on the NSC can be found at nscsports.org.

Tom Schardin covers sports for Savage and Prior Lake. He is dependable, sarcastic and always joking around. Tom enjoys running and swimming and is often busy coaching his two kids' sports teams.

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