It started as a little tournament featuring a couple friends playing EA's FIFA. It is now a behemoth event raising five figures which draws the attention and participation of hundreds. This year the SonarFeed FIFA Tournament raised a whopping $11,421.27.
It was a great event. Stefan Frei through some amazing support behind it auctioning off two keeper kits, but he also talked a lot of his friends into joining the event as well. In fact, 10 players under contract with the team came - Frei, Chad Marshall, Cristian Roldan, Aaron Kovar, Dylan Remick, Oniel Fisher, Damien Lowe, Charlie Lyon, Jordan Schweitzer, and Andy Craven. Ashani Fairclough, who is trying to make the roster, also made an appearance. Two Academy kids (Tobi Jnohope, Nick Hinds) came. Academy alum Dom Dismuke showed that being a Sounder is for life.
Most of those played the game, and played quite well.
They also hung out with fans of all ages. Team Sounder at Heart had a rough go of it though, with three first-round losses between myself, Eric Flatness and Mike Russell. At least there's next year.
The big earners were;
- Stephan Frei Purple Game Worn Jersey & Shorts (Autographed by Frei) $1,100.00
- Stefan Frei Framed Poster for People (Autographed by Frei & his wife) $650.00
- Halo 5 Pitch Black Jersey (Autographed by the '15 roster) $625.00
- Stephan Frei Orange Game Worn Jersey & Shorts (Autographed by Frei) $550.00
- Adidas Predator Shoes, Full Kit, Rainjacket & Socks (Autographed by Neagle) $500.00
This site also got in on the action, offering up control of Sounder at Heart for a day. The great Hugo Garcia put $475 down for the right to represent the site and the community. He will attend a practice where he'll interview a few coaches and players. Hugo has let me know that he aims to do much of this in Spanish, which is quite exciting. You should be excited too, because the bid he beat was from a Portland Timbers fan (who I would have gotten interviews with Sigi, Schmetzer and Scott as payback). SaH also sold seven Enemy's Goal Is Down scarves with 100% of those proceeds going to the Lamar Neagle Foundation.
Skye came out of the Sounder at Heart bracket beating Nick (who beat me in round one) to advance to the final. James came in second. Skye will now advance to The Ninety where they will face seven of the best FIFA '16 players in the Pacific Northwest with a trip to New York on the line, all as part of the FIFA Interactive World Cup.
Unlike past years there was no on-hand matcher, though people who participated can contact their employers about matching to help make that number bigger.
In a couple weeks the people at SonarFeed will start planning for next year's tournament. But for now the dozens of people behind the event get to relax knowing that they made a difference in the lives of local youths.