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News | April 4, 2024

Air Force soars past Marines, Army sinks Navy to open 2024 Armed Forces Championship

By Mr. Steven Dinote, U.S. Armed Forces Sports Secretariat U.S. Armed Forces Sports

Air Force and Marine Corps opened the 2024 Armed Forces Men’s Soccer Championship at the Albany State University West Campus Soccer Complex in stunning spectacular. 


Air Force Major Chris Brown of Hill AFB, Utah knocked in a header from 1st Lt Michael Neacsu’ (Hanscom AFB, Mass.) corner kick in the 16th minute. 

Marine Corps immediately responded when Sgt. Carlos Vazquezperez of Marine Corps Base Hawaii shot the equalizer in the 19th minute. 

With the score tied, Air Force took advantage of some miscues to allow SSgt Alfredo Villasenor of Luke AFB, Arizona to jump ahead with the goal in the 24th minute.  As the first half entered additional time, Air Force’s Neacsu nailed the game sealer in the 45th minute. 

Air Force led at the half 3-1, and despite steady barrage of Marine Corps’ attempts, Air Force defense held their ground to win the match.  


In the opening minutes of the first half, Army 1st Lt. Carter Kowaleski of Fort Bliss, Texas lifted Army on the board.  The match remained scoreless throughout the rest of the half and all 45 minutes of the second half until Sgt. Samuel Esyin of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. crushed all hopes of a last minute Navy comeback with a goal in three minutes of additional time at the 90-minute mark.  Esyin’s goal put Army in the win column with a final score 2-0.

Matches continue on Friday, April 5th at 4:00 P.M.  The Armed Forces Championship is hosted by  United States Marine Corps Base Albany, Georgia in partnership with Albany State University.  

Teams play in single round-robin competition with the top two teams playing in the championship match on April 9th.  Visit the Armed Forces Sports website for detailed results, photo links, and standings.