Our Development Teams are well into their spring season, with an extremely busy playing schedule.All four teams were competing at a development tournament in Victoria last week. It was our first of two road trips to the Island this year (next month we head to Nanaimo) and our teams had a lot of fun and thoroughly enjoyed the soccer experience.
The sun shone all weekend and there was some excellent soccer on show throughout the weekend. Each of our teams played four matches against similar academies to our own as well as club teams from Victoria and Nanaimo.
Soccaskool’s Development Teams have already gained quite the reputation in the Lower Mainland for excellence and we introduced ourselves to The Island by recording 15 wins and just 1 defeat over the course of the weekend !
More importantly, our teams played some attractive soccer and provided the large crowds with lots of entertainment !
It was FUTSAL last weekend for the Soccaskool Development Teams, as we travelled to Vernon to take part in a futsal tournament competing against teams from Vernon and Nelson.
Our players had practised in futsal format for the two weeks leading up to this event so we were well prepared for the differences between futsal and the indoor soccer that we usually play. All of the matches were played on a hard surface gymnasium floor and with a heavier ball which the players had
to adapt to. One thing that our players had no trouble at all in adapting to was the speed of the game. The way we encourage our teams play, with very quick ball movement, is perfectly suited to futsal and we were able to enjoy some excellent periods of play which made for some very exciting games.
From our academy we sent 5 teams to the tournament. Three of these teams competed in the U12 division and the other two competed at U10.
Thank you to our friends from EFS for hosting the event and for making us welcome. Overall the tournament was an excellent experience for everyone with each of our teams performing well with great success.
Soccaskool’s U10s were in action this weekend in Kamloops. They joined our U11s and our U9s for a full day of matches against Soccer Quest Academy. All of the games were played on Quest’s indoor 6 a side facility in Kamloops, and the two academies enjoyed a great day of matches together across the age groups. All games produced some very exciting, good quality soccer and were enjoyed by large crowds of parents and fans.
Our U11s and U12s also enjoyed an excellent inter squad match at CNC in Kelowna on Saturday
The quality of soccer on show from all of our Development Teams this weekend demonstrates perfectly that our program has a continous feel to it these days. Each of our teams, from U9 to U12 were trying to play a similar brand and style of quick, slick, attacking soccer. These teams have now reached the half way point of our 2016-17 Development Teams Program. They will continue to practice 3 times a week through the winter months, and will play the occasional inter squad matches, resuming a full competitive playing schedule in March.
At this point, each of our teams have had a full five months of practice and have played in around 20 competitive matches. The development progress of these teams and these players was there for all to see this weekend !
Our new U9 Development Team are now well and truly up and running. Having played their first competitive matches against Kamloops Quest Academy a couple of weeks ago, we felt that they were ready to join our other three Development Teams and start playing in regular matchday events. So the U9s joined the others last week as we took a road trip to The Coast to match all four of our teams against the excellent academy programs of TSS and Faly Academy. All of the matches were very good quality indeed, and once more we attracted large crowds who enjoyed the excellent soccer on show. All of our teams, including the U9s, matched up well against TSS in Richmond on the Saturday night. On Sunday we played Faly Academy at Simon Fraser University. Once again, all of our teams matched up well against first class opponents. We are very happy with the progress our U9s have made since we formed that team in the summer.
Our Development Teams are formed at the end of June, the teams then start practicing straight away in July. Our Development Team players practice 3 times a week, always with a professional and qualified coach, always on excellent fields….usually turf. The training continues all year round with a 2 week break at Christmas. In addition to this training schedule, we aim to play between 30 and 40 competitive matches against hand picked opponents over the course of the year. Our U10s, U11s and U12s have already each played 14 matches since being formed in June. We have two more trips to the Coast scheduled before Christmas.
Once our U12 players ‘graduate’ from Soccaskool next June, we will encourage each of them to try out for the 2005 Thompson Okanagan FC Intake team and play in the BC Soccer Premier League from U13 onwards. At Soccaskool, we measure our success by the percentage of those graduating players who try for TOFC and are named on the rosters. Our current success rate is 100%.
Last week Soccaskool hosted a series of matches here in Kelowna against Soccer Quest Academy, who travelled down from Kamloops. Our U9, U10 and U11 Development Teams each played a pair of matches against their Quest counterparts, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. We watched some great soccer on a beautiful sunny day. There were some excellent moments, some great goals and some outstanding players on show from both academy programs. All of the matches were very competitive and played in a very good spirit. The games were watched by large crowds, who were very well entertained all day !
The highlight for us at Soccaskool was the opportunity for us to play our brand new U9 team in their first ever competitive match and the way they played in that opening match easily surpassed our expectations of them. The pictures above are from that opening U9 match. Well done to everyone involved !