Rock Hill lands big soccer tournament

(ROCK HILL, SC) - The city of Rock Hill is rolling out the welcome mat to hundreds of young athletes.

The U.S. Youth Soccer National Championships kick off in Rock Hill Wednesday.

It is a tournament Rock Hill fought very hard for.

Mark Sexton is Rock Hill's tourism division supervisor. He says the city has hosted big events before, "but nothing on a national caliber like this event."

Sexton and his team worked very hard to land the series, beating out big cities like Boston.

"It is nice to be able to say you went up against a big city and you're able to bring it home for a small community," he says.

And the win will be lucrative.

"We're anticipating a direct economic impact of three million dollars," Sexton says.

As president of Discoveries Soccer Club, Neil Welborn has traveled across the country to see past U.S. Youth Soccer Championships.

"This is the best," he says, standing on the lush green grass of Manchester Meadows soccer complex. "This is the best facility I've ever seen."

Welborn is proud of local leaders.

"Soccer is serious business in Rock Hill, it pays off for the city of Rock Hill, it pays off for York County. It pays off for Charlotte. We expect every hotel between Tyvola Road and the Chester County line full this weekend," he says.

The event is free for spectators.