> SOUTHERN INDIANA — The Kentucky Select Soccer League is now in full swing for the spring and it features a number of the area’s teams — some of which have gotten off to great starts.
The KSSL was formed in 1998 when representatives from seven clubs met in January of that year. It has grown from an initial 140 teams to more than 300.
Net-Surfers U-16s kicked off in blazing fashion in the Premier Division with two wins from two games, scoring five goals and conceding none.
Coach Gary Tanner’s charges beat Lexington 2-0 in their first game on April 1, then beat Spencer County Footie Chicks in their first home game on Saturday by a 3-0 scoreline.
They will play Spencer County again this coming Saturday and United 96 at home on Wednesday.
Also going well are Net-Surfers U-14s, who sit atop of Division 1 after winning their first two games.
Elle Kornexl’s girls will take on Storm, which they have already beaten 2-1 last Saturday, before entertaining Bluegrass SC on Sunday.
Net-Surfers U-15s, coached by Marlon Jones, are playing in Division 1 and will take on FC KY White next Saturday before a home game to MUSA flyers on Wednesday.
On the boys’ side, Southern Indiana United U-13 Thunder, coached by Mike Campbell, plays their first games of the season in the Premier Division against Radcliff Revolution on Sunday and LSA ‘99 Central on Wednesday, both away. Revolution has already played five games, winning four.
Southern Indiana United U-12s won their season opener in Division 2, beating United Premier, 3-2. They will entertain Eastern Kentucky this Saturday and Mockingbird Gold next Wednesday.
SIU U-11 Inferno play in Division 3 and Travis Henretty’s charges will play Paris Springboks at home this Saturday before traveling to LFC Classic Red on Sunday. The SIU U-10s, coached by Jamie Ochsner, will play next Wednesday at home to Thoroughbreds.
NO ACADEMY JOY FOR KENTUCKIANA
It’s a case of “try, try, try again” for Kentuckiana after U.S. Soccer announced last week that two Major League Soccer clubs have been selected to join the Development Academy for the 2012-13 season.
The addition of Montreal Impact and Portland Timbers will expand the academy, which features teams at U-15/16 and U-17/18 levels, to 80 clubs.
The two were chosen following an extensive review process of both the technical and programmatic sides of each club.
The Portland Timbers joined the MLS in 2011, while Montreal Impact is in their first season in the league.
Two applications were made by Louisville interests: Mockingbird Valley, which has joined forces with Chicago Fire Juniors, the youth affiliate of MLS club Chicago Fire; and Rovers Academy, a coming together of top clubs United 1996 and Javanon.
Regardless of the decision, changes in Louisville soccer are set to continue.
Mockingbird is now known as Chicago Fire Juniors-Kentucky and will start to wear the Fire uniforms after the spring season.
Javanon and United 1996, meanwhile, will fill two teams in each age group on the boys’ side U-13 through U-18 under the Rovers Academy moniker, playing in the Midwest Developmental League. Girls’ teams will be added in the 2013-14 season.
This is not the first attempt to secure a Development Academy for Louisville. Two years ago, Javanon and Mockingbird submitted a combined proposal.
Every year, U.S. Soccer evaluates teams to determine which ones have the best potential to generate future national team players.
Selection is based on how applicants match up in various categories, including geographic location, history of player production, coaching staff/player pool and administrative capabilities.
The idea for the U.S. Soccer Federation to offer Development Academy teams came to fruition in 2007. The goal was to bring the game at an underage level up to par with the rest of the world, with a focus on developing the players rather than going after results.
The structure allows scouts to identify more players capable of becoming part of national team pools, and long term it is hoped to change the quality of the player at all levels of American soccer.
U.S. Soccer announced in February that the academy will be moving to a 10-month season, starting in 2012-13. This will result in the abolition of top talent from boys’ high school soccer.
Contact Aidan Kelly at email@example.com.