1751 Savage Road, Richmond, BC

TSS Academy Teams Wrap Up

ImageWith the summer drawing to a close, we wanted to thank all those who participated in our academy teams this year. We had a very successful program as we fielded more teams than ever before.

Congratulations to the U11 girls team under Brendan Quarry who won the Starfire Sounders Cup tournament in July. The team managed to reach the finals at their previous two tournaments so winning their final competition was a well-deserved way to finish off the program. "There was some crazy talent on this team," said Quarry. "We tried to focus on moving the ball quickly and gain a better understanding of the game. The team performed incredibly well - especially towards the end of the program. It was really fun watching them at their best."

Chris Livingston led the U12 girls team to victories at both the Baker Blast and the Starfire Sounders Cup. The team had a very successful program throughout the summer. "Fortunately for me, I inherited a talented group of soccer players from my colleagues," said Livingston. "We spent 5 months working on fundamental soccer skills such as passing, dribbling, and movement off the ball. In the end, the players showed great progress throughout the program and came away with some silverware as well."

Led by Colin Elmes, the U13 girls had a positive showing this summer as they competed in the Skagit River Cup, Baker Blast, and the Pats Cups in California. The team performed well all summer but had difficulty overcoming some stiff competition in Souther California. "It's always a difficult challenge in Southern California," said Elmes. "The standard in the age group this year was up a notch as well which just added to the difficulty."

The U13 girls team under Daryl Ware-Lane played some very nice soccer over the summer. They began their campaign at the Skagit River Cup in Washington in May and finished off at the Pats Cup in Southern California in late July. The team was entered into flight 1 at the Pats Cup, coming up against a number of Souther California elite clubs. Though the team didn't manage to secure a result at the tournament, they lost their matches by only one goal against some top teams in the region such as Slammers FC who went on to win the tournament. "I was very pleased with this team all summer," said Ware-Lane. "They played some great football and showed real character throughout the program."

The U18 girls team led by Brendan Quarry saw considerable success this summer as they competed in the reserve division of the Pacific Coast Soccer League. With a record of 11 wins, 2 losses, and 3 ties, the TSS squad found themselves in the Challenge Cup finals. The team defeated Chilliwack FC 3-2 in extra time and then went on to defeat the Penticton Pinnacles 2-1 to win the cup. "I thoroughly enjoyed coaching this team," said Quarry. "Everyone brought a high level of professionalism to this program and that really showed on the pitch. I couldn't have asked for a better group of players...I already miss this team."

The Premier Women's team under Colin Elmes faced a daunting challenge all summer. As the youngest team competing in the premier division of the Pacific Coast Soccer League, they came up against some heavy competition. It took halfway through the season for the team to really get their bearings. But by the end of the season, the squad was standing up to teams who ran them over at the beginning of the campaign. "This was really about preparing our 92-born players for college soccer," said Elmes. "If was rough going at the beginning but they managed to really turn things around. I'm confident this experience has better prepared them for college soccer this fall."

The U11 boys, coached by Colin Elmes, saw themselves on a steady learning and development curve that was a pleasure to watch. At their first event at the Memorial Day Cup at Starfire, the group was in tough against some strong opponents. At the Baker Blast, the group took steps forward, narrowly missing out on a position in the semi-finals. At their final event at the FC Sounders Cup, the team looked much more polished and earned a spot in the final against a strong Seattle United team. "It seemed as though these boys matured with every training session," said Elmes. "They worked hard all summer and steadily improved their performance on the pitch. It was a pleasure coaching these boys."

The U12 boys team under the stewardship of Chris Livingston reached the finals of both the Skagit River Cup in Washington and the PSA Diadora Cup in California. They also reached the semi-finals at the Baker Blast and the quarter-finals at the Pats Cup. The Pats Cup proved to be the defining moment for the team as they played at the top of their game. "Playing into the wind and 2 nil down at the half in the opening Pats cup game had me worried," said Livingston. "The 2nd half left me speechless as these little guys pulled together and played some fantastic flowing soccer. They passed the ball like they'd been together for years, pulling the game back level. To witness these young players connecting all the skills we had worked on, as well as problem solving on the pitch, was all very gratifying as a coach."

The U13 boys were a unique mix of players born in 1999-1997 coached by Terry Jarvis. The group had its best experience at the Skagit River Cup in May. At this event, the group came out of the gate with some strong performances and earned a position in the semi-finals. In the Baker Blast and FC Sounders Cup, the boys had difficulty scoring and were unable to advance to the knockout phase of the tournaments. "The group really deserved better," said Rob Datillo. "We gave them the nickname 'TSS Fight' because of their competitive spirit. I am glad they had the chance to compete against some of the strongest players in their age."

Comprised mainly of Vancouver-based players, the U13 boys were coached by Gareth Hughes as he led the team to 2 championships out of 4 tournaments. Having won both the Skagit River Cup and Baker Blast Championships, Gareth was confident in his ability to bring home hardware from California. At the final of the PSA Diadora Cup in Anaheim Hills, a slow start had them behind 2-0 at the half, and even though they scored in the first minute of the second half, their Californian counterparts found ways to protect their slim lead. At the Pats Cup, the group competed with intensity and qualified for the final without conceding a goal. The final was entertaining with many goal scoring opportunities. But like the PSA tournament, the Laguna Niguel team found ways to disrupt the flow of the game and the U13 boys went down to defeat 1-0. "It was a great summer season with these lads," said Hughes. "I know the boys were disappointed at the Pats Cup but they deserve much credit for responding so well to the fierce competition you encounter at these tournaments in California."

Under the stewardship of Rob Dattilo, a core group of players returned to avenge their shortcomings from the previous summer. Like last year, the U15 boys team were good enough to win tournaments. This group had its best performances at the Baker Blast where they lost to the Watcom County Rangers for the second year on the trot - this time in a shootout. Prior to their departure to California, the team roster changed as a result of some long term injuries, and the group took on a new dynamic. At the PSA Diadora Cup in Anaheim, the team lost in the semi-finals 2-0 against Chivas. The boys did very well to earn their berth into the final, coming from behind 2-0 in their opening game to win 5-2. At the Pats Cup, the team started well drawing 1-1 to a very competitive Pateadores team. A slow start in their second game put their chances of advancement at risk. They fell 3-0 to another Pateadores team and then went on to play their best football against San Diego United. "There is no question that while in California, the players grew as individuals," said Dattilo. "Unfortunately, we just needed a little more time to find the synergies required for success on the soccer field."