The 2024 Sylvester Cup is scheduled for October 1, 2024.

John Sylvester

John Sylvester with Cheryl Urbaniek Peterson

Minneapolis Washburn’s own John “Sly” Sylvester was known as a fantastic soccer player and coach and an even better person who everyone seemed to know.  John represented commitment, dedication and hard work at all levels of youth and high school soccer.  A tireless ambassador for youth soccer, John was a driving force for soccer in the Minneapolis community and left a lasting impression on all who knew him.

John Sylvester was a 1991 graduate of Washburn, where he was a captain and an all-state soccer player. He went on to play for the Minnesota Thunder at a time when the team dominated the USL leagues and won a national championship. Later John returned to coach girls’ soccer here at Washburn. John was also a long-time coach, trainer and coaching director for the Minneapolis United Soccer Club and was an inspiration to a generation of soccer players in Minneapolis. He offered his love of soccer and his expertise to everyone around him, but mostly to the many girls he coached.

After a long, courageous battle with ALS, John died in June 2017. 

Sylvester Cup Scholarship

In 2017 the Sylvester family worked with Washburn to create the Sylvester Cup Scholarship.  Each year these college scholarships are awarded to one female and one male player at Washburn during the spring of their senior year.  Applicants are selected for the scholarship based on their demonstration of John Sylvester’s core values:  Inclusiveness (brings everyone together), Ambassador (makes others better), Commitment (goes above and beyond), Passion (love of the game), and Hard Work (leaves it all on the field).

Join us on Tuesday at Washburn as we celebrate Minneapolis Soccer with Southwest High School and honor John Sylvester. The boys game is at 5:00, then there will be a short program followed by the girls game at 7:00.

Hallie Brown

Hallie, a Southwest High School soccer player who began playing soccer when she was 5 years old, trained with John and loved having him as her winter training coach at Minneapolis United. She learned from him that you can work hard and have fun on the field. Hallie loved soccer, music, dancing and her family and friends. Her positive, infectious and fighting attitude carried her on the soccer field and in her journey with cancer. Her love of the game and zest for life was shared by all who knew her. Hallie died in April of 2013 but her spirit and memory stay strong.

Donate to the John Sylvester Scholarship Fund

Donations to the John Sylvester Scholarship Fund provide educational scholarships to graduating seniors who play soccer. Online donations can be made HERE.

Donate via Venmo: @WashburnGirls-Soccer / put Sylvester Cup in the note

Make a check to Washburn Foundation, Sylvester Scholarship in memo line. More info about the Washburn Foundation: HERE