Heat doesn’t stop local soccer players from playing in ‘Friendship Cup’

Around 450 kids participated in Sunday's tournament (Beairshelle Edme/CBS North Carolina)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Sunday’s heat didn’t stop some kids from hitting the turf and playing in the McDonald’s Friendship Cup, though the weather did bump up the scheduled games to start a little earlier.

This is the fifth year CASL has hosted the games and McDonald’s of North Raleigh has sponsored it.

More than 30 area teams competed.

Organizers say they work with and recruit teams from low income communities to play in the tournament; they tell CBS North Carolina it’s one way to highlight these talented kids and let them showcase their skills on the soccer field.

“It’s the same excitement [every year]! We get new kids every year; we have a lot of returning players that come back,” explained Katharine Eberhardt, business development director for CASL. “But at the same time everyone is excited to come together. A lot of kids don’t get to play on a surface like this throughout the year. They’re playing on dirt and rocks and it gives them the chance to have a real game and a real tournament experience.”

Organizers estimate that at least 450 kids participated in this year’s tournament.

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