Since early January, SOCA's top elite boys playing in the U-17 through U-15 age groups have received seven weeks of intensive training and high level game experience. Most recently, the Select Boys have been put under the microscope by top Virginia college coaches. NCAA Division I coaches from Virginia Commonwealth University (top 20 Division I program), Longwood University and NCAA Division III Lynchburg College all came to visit the players at their home field in Charlottesville. On separate occasions, coaches from each program ran a two hour training session for the SOCA players and answered questions specific to their schools.
"These are very unique opportunities. We’re delighted that our club has great relationships with local college coaches, and the coaches appreciate the opportunity to come visit and train our top players. We’re glad to make this opportunity available to SOCA players. This is a great chance for the players to meet coaches, train with them in a comfortable setting, and get to know a college coach's personality and style. It also provides college coaches the chance to see and work with our best players in their own club environment. The value of these relationships cannot be overstated and they will continue to pay significant dividends for current and future SOCA players," said Brian Kuk, SOCA's Director of Coaching.
In addition to training under the direction of local college coaches, the Select Boys took part in SOCA's inaugural Select College Showcase on February 9 and 10 in Charlottesville, VA. With coaches from over ten NCAA Division I and Division III schools in attendance, the Select Boys played top regional competition in showcase matches against 2012 Maryland State Champion FC Frederick and 2012 Virginia State Semifinalist, ABGC United.
"Over the past four years, the SOCA Select Boys program, supplementing our Elite programming, has become a successful college recruiting platform for our top male players. The number of SOCA players going to play NCAA Division I and Division III soccer is extraordinary. The best part is our kids are not being buried on the bench; rather they are playing significant roles at the schools they attend. We think this is because players are making good decisions on schools which are the right fit for them. We also know that our players are getting great preparation through the quality coaching and programming offered by the club," said SOCA Executive Director, Bill Mueller.
SOCA's Select Boys program will continue through March.