Message from the TOYSL Region Y League Development Committee
Over the past three months, representatives from the five TOYSL districts (Kamloops, Salmon Arm, Vernon, Kelowna and Penticton) have been meeting to review the current Y league program and develop a program going forward that meets the needs of all high-level players in the region.
While there has been some success in fielding Y league teams over the past number of years, it is readily apparent that the current structure has not been successful in drawing the best players from all districts.
The main obstacles identified in our meetings are:
•Excess travel time to practices, particularly in the winter months
Unfortunately, our regional geography will always present some obstacles for players in the outlying areas of the region. One of our goals, however, is to reduce travel time and costs for those players, with the end result hopefully being higher participation levels from those areas.
•Conflict with local District programs
A number of the districts in the region have indicated a wish to field “A” teams, with schedules that would allow for competitive games (tournament, exhibition, league) throughout the fall and spring seasons. To this end, discussions have been held with both Alberta and U.S. teams, with the intent of developing a full TOYSL schedule throughout these time frames.
While the Y league program will never be a low-cost option, it was the goal of the committee to reduce these costs to a manageable level. Key to this is to reduce travel time, particularly through the fall and winter months. Based on our discussions and research, we feel that the costs this year will be substantially lower than last year.
1. Attract high-level players from throughout the region into the program.
2. Attract high-level coaches from throughout the region into the program.
3. Provide players with the opportunity to practice and play in their local districts through the fall season.
4. Provide players with the opportunity to train throughout the winter.
5. Reduce program costs.
At the end of the day, the primary goal of this program is to provide development opportunities for our top players. Many of those players have expressed a wish to play a longer season and the opportunity to practice throughout the winter. We feel that the program we have developed will provide those opportunities. It is our hope that the soccer community in the TOYSL region will embrace this program, thereby providing improved opportunities for all of our top players.
Okanagan SYL Program Changes
1. Winter Practice
During the winter, prospective Y league players will have the opportunity to participate in practices throughout the region. Based on suggestions from Chris Murphy of the Whitecaps, player pools will be developed which will have the opportunity to practice under the direction of local Technical Directors and coaches, Provincial team coaches and (hopefully) Whitecap’s coaches. Players will have the option to participate in practices in both their home district and in other districts in the region. These pools will allow easier access to the program for players from all districts and hopefully generate additional player interest throughout the region. The pools will allow Y league coaches and technical director’s additional exposure to the players prior to tryouts. Additional benefits should include reduced travel time and costs.
To be held in mid March. As players will have been seen by coaches throughout the winter, it is felt that a three-day tryout schedule should be sufficient.
3. Games and Practices
The Y league schedule runs from May through to the end of July. This is dictated in part by the coastal teams, where play has to be wound up by the end of July to allow their top-level players a two-week break prior to commencing Metro league programs.
The Y league schedule will be designed to minimize conflict with the TOYSL schedule. This will allow all Y league players the opportunity to play within their district TOYSL programs. We have reviewed this schedule with the TOYSL scheduler and feel that there will be minimal to no game conflicts, regardless of whether players are playing A or B, at the District level.
District A and B Teams
In keeping with the goals defined above, all Districts have agreed that players should have the opportunity to play with their respective District teams. Tryouts for these teams will be held in the fall and an expanded fall schedule is being developed by district members, with teams being invited to the region from Alberta and the U.S. Along with interdivisional exhibition play, this should allow players with quality opportunities for development throughout the fall season.
While this document details the basic format for the TOYSL region’s Y league program for 2010, there are a lot of details to be worked out and development committee meetings will be ongoing. All decisions will be based on a “player first” mentality, with player development throughout the region the primary goal of the program. With this in mind, we will be searching for the right personnel to fill key positions, with the most important being those of team coaches and club technical director. Until key management positions can be filled, anyone interested in positions with the club or wishing to become involved in the program can contact:
Ph: 250-862-1422(days) 250-762-3584(evenings)
Further information will be dispersed as we move forward. As you know, a top quality program can only be developed with the support of the soccer community. With this in mind, we look forward to a successful 2010 season.
TOYSL Region Y League Development Committee