Soccer is a fun sport!!! It is equally fun for boys and girls of all backgrounds and abilities. It is also, though, a game of skill that has many benefits, especially for those who play the game.
What are the Benefits?
Ä Cardiovascular endurance
Ä Muscle strength
The Mill Creek Optimist Soccer Club Program
The Mill Creek Optimist Soccer Club (MCOSC) offers both Recreational and RecPlus soccer for both girls and boys ages 5-18 during both the spring and fall. Sign-ups for the Spring Season are in January/February, and the sign-ups for the Fall Season are in June/July. (Please check the website for exact dates and times as those months draw closer.)
Players in ages 5-10 are involved in recreational soccer which is an interclub program, which means that they have all their practices and games at our fields; and they play other teams from the MCOSC. After the players have registered, they are divided among the different teams. The teams usually have three practices and then compete in roughly ten games. At the end of the season there is an Awards Day. In the Fall, MCOSC has a “Tri-Star Competition” which allows the players to compete individually in the various skills within soccer.
Players in ages 5-10 play small-sided soccer: U6's usally play 3v3; U8's usually play 4v4, and U10's usually play 6v6.
For ages 11-18, the players are involved in a Rec Plus Soccer Program which offers the players a competitive experience while providing a venue for the players to have fun. Players in ages 11-18 participate in the West Central Suburban Soccer Federation (WCSSF) league playing 10 games: 5 home games and 5 away games. Games are usually on Saturdays and Sundays, with an occassional weekday evenings. Most of the U12 – U19 teams hold two practices during the week.
The U12 teams play 8v8 on the field with a goalie while U14 and U19 play 11v11.
The RecPlus teams (ages 11-18) do not practice the use of tryouts, invitations, recruiting or any like process to roster players selectively to any recreational-plus team on the basis of talent or ability. Rec Plus encourages participation so every player should play at least 50% of every game. Rec Plus provides an exciting soccer experience for player to develop their technical skills and mental maturity. All youth are encouraged to join Rec Plus Soccer for the fun of playing soccer and to gain the positive experiences of being involved in a team sport.
Soccer Is a Great Game for Children of All Ages
· It's aerobic. Throughout a soccer game, players are constantly in motion, running from one area of the field to the another. Exercising has physical and psychological benefits. Children who play soccer regularly are developing the habit of incorporating regular exercise into their lives.
· It's cooperative. Because passing the ball is essential to success in both offense and defense, players must communicate well and be consistently mindful of their team members' whereabouts on the field.
Everyone Gets Involved
· It's inclusive. Children of any age and varying ability can enjoy the game. In the United States alone, over 40 million children and young people participate in soccer.
· It's truly a team sport. In soccer, only the goalie is subject to ongoing individual scrutiny as she prevents the ball from entering the goal. This means that soccer can be a less pressured sport for children than baseball, for instance, in which the individual skill of batters and pitchers is constantly on display. Soccer is particularly appealing to kids who may not have superior athletic ability, but who enjoy participating in team sports.
· It teaches social coping skills. Soccer is such a team sport and focuses highly on group participation, and working together as a team. Playing soccer can teach children good sportsmanship: how to successfully handle challenges like winning and losing in competition; encouraging and supporting others; striving to be your best; and getting along with kids of varying backgrounds and temperaments.
Why play small sided games?
Ä Because we want our young football (soccer) players to touch the soccer ball more often and become more skilful with it! (individual technical development)
Ä Because we want our young soccer players to make more, less-complicated decisions during the game! (tactical development)
Ä Because we want our young soccer players to be more physically efficient in the field space they are playing in! (reduced field size)
Ä Because we want our young soccer players to have more individual teaching time with the coach! Less players on the field and less players on the team will guarantee this! (need to feel worthy and need to feel important)
Ä Because we want our young soccer players to have more, involved playing time in the game! (more opportunity to solve problems that only the game presents)
Ä Because we want our young soccer players to have more opportunity to play on both sides of the ball! (more exposure to attacking and defending situations)
Ä Because we want our young soccer players to have more opportunities to score goals! (pure excitement)
Ä Best of all, the game is simple, can be played without adult involvement and it's FUN!
Ä These are the reasons why we adults must foster "Small-Sided Games" in our youth soccer programs. The "Small-Sided" environment is a developmentally appropriate environment for our young soccer players. It’s a FUN environment that focuses on the young soccer player.
It just makes sense doesn’t it?
What do I need to play?
Here's what the players will need:
1. SHIN GUARDS: mandatory for all ages at all games and practices
2. CLEATS: recommendd but not required. Cleat bottoms must be "soccer" with no toe cleat.
3. BALL: every player must have a ball to bring to all practices. The following are the sizes needed for the different age groups:
U6-U8 - Size 3; U10-U12 - Size 4; U14-U18 - Size 5
4. HYDRATION: always have a water bottle or sports drink available for your child at games and practices.
Parents, we could not run our soccer program without you! We need people to volunteer as Coaches, Assistant Coaches, Team Managers or Team Parents, maintenance or field work, fund-raising, etc., etc., etc.
You could even donate your time and be a member on the Board of the Mill Creek Optimist Soccer Club.
There's LOTS to do! Come and get involved!
See ya' on the fields!
We have two divisions: Rec (Ages 4-10ish) and RecPlus (Ages 10ish-18). (To check the division of your child, check the age chart under the "forms" tab.)
For the Rec Division, the practices will start the week after Spring Break. The players will have four practices before the games begin. Each team will have 10 games. The season will officially end on Saturday, May 22nd, with their final game and an awards presentation. The cost is $60.00, which includes socks, shorts and a shirt. However, we do offer a couple of discounts: you may deduct $5 for each additional child enrolled, and you may deduct $5 if your child has black shorts that she/he can wear from another season or another sport (as long as the shorts are mostly black). You would need to provide shin guards, sneakers/cleats, and it is good to have your own ball for practices.
The games and practices are on held on Tuesday nights, Thursday nights and Saturday mornings before 12 noon. All the games and practices for that division are held at the Mill Creek soccer fields, which is near the high school football field. If you drive by, you'll see a grey shed a ways past the football field, which has a big soccer ball on it. That's where we practice & have our games.
For the RecPlus Division, practices begin the middle of March with the games starting towards the middle of April. The end of the season tournament will be the first weekend in June. The cost is $80, which includes socks, shorts, and a shirt. However, we do offer the same discounts as the Rec Division as well as a $7 discount if they player can re-use a jersey from a previous season.
Hope this helps!
MCOSC Board Director