Westfield Soccer Association

Travel Team Selection Process

Travel Team Selection for the Fall of 2018

This section is meant for all WSA members who are interested in becoming a part of the travel program for the Fall 2018 & Spring 2019 seasons. During the Spring of 2018 we will go through the process of selecting these teams, making sure that everyone interested is given the opportunity to be seen and evaluated. 

Number 1 objective – Being placed in the right environment

Our travel program starts at U9, which means that anyone born in 2010 (or before) is eligible to try out. It is important that everyone who wants to be considered for a travel team takes part in the entire process, to give us a chance to assess where a player currently is in his or her development. It is important to know that the number one objective each year, during the process of forming teams, is to make sure that players are assigned to play for a team that best fits their needs. Someone's needs may change, therefore is it important to assess and evaluate players each year.  The WSA is fortunate enough to be able to field several teams per age group and we aim to field teams containing players of similar abilities.  Since we are capable of fielding multiple teams in an age group we aim to get all our players on a team of a similar skill level. 

Although it is not always easy as a parent, it is very important to be realistic and realize that playing on the first team is not the #1 priority. We would hate to see a player lose confidence in his or her skills because the player was misplaced on a team that didn’t fit his or her needs. The placement of players is the key to ensure players enjoy the experience and are given the opportunity to develop. 

We continue to monitor the development of all players in the travel program throughout the year. We aim to develop all of the players within the program and will move players from team to team if it will benefit the player or players in question. In the end, we ask that both players and parents worry less about being placed on a particular team and to focus on enjoying the privilege and reward of being placed on a travel team. 

Travel Team Selection

When discussing the placement of players, we definitely value the talent of the players in our program. However, it is very important to understand that talent is not the only item considered, as we also consider a player’s attitude, effort, commitment, perseverance, coach ability and discipline. We all know that talent is important, but as in life, not the only factor that determines where we end up. We gather information from a variety of sources to ensure we have the data needed to place players on the right team for the 2018-2019 seasons. As part of the process we will run programs in the Spring that will provide us with information on all interested players and help us with the team selection.

Travel Commitment – general outline

We ask our travel players to commit to soccer four days a week (three 90-minute training sessions and one game) and their effort, attendance, and participation is critical to the success of the program and their development. 

The Fall Season starts shortly after Labor Day weekend, with teams often starting their team practice sessions late August, and runs through November, typically finishing the weekend before Thanksgiving.

The Spring Season starts early March and wraps up right around Memorial Day Weekend. Depending on the age and the level a team competes at, this may be extended in to June.

Please note that almost all travel teams do participate in winter training as well. On top of that the WSA does also offer all travel players the opportunity to take part in an in-house futsal league every winter. This in house futsal league is set up for those players interested in additional practice/play time over the winter.

It is important to remember that the team selection IS NOT solely based on the participation of our members in the programs below. We gather information through mid year and end of Spring evaluations from professional and head coaches as part of the process.

Anyone who is interested to play travel during the 2018-2019 seasons needs to take part in the program they are eligible for based on their year of birth. Participation, however, doesn’t guarantee placement in the travel program.

Travel Team Selection - Spring 2018

Year of Birth

Age Group 2018-2019

Selection Process

2010

Incoming U9’s

U8 Pre Travel Program

2009

Incoming U10’s

Age Group Academy

2008

Incoming U11’s

Age Group Academy

2007

Incoming U12’s

Evaluation Festivals

2006

Incoming U13’s

Evaluation Festivals

2005

Incoming U14’s

Open Practice Sessions

2002-2004

Incoming U15 – U17’s

Open Practice Sessions

 

For more info on these specific programs and how to register please see below.

Incoming U9’s – Pre Travel Program

Our travel program starts at U9. All WSA members born in 2010 are eligible to take part in the U8 Academy/Pre Travel Program which is run to help form our U9 travel teams for the 2018-2019 seasons. To give all players the opportunity to be seen as often as possible and to fairly asses and evaluate them all, we run the U8 Pre Travel Program during the Spring of 2018.

Anyone who wants to be considered for an U9 travel team needs to take part in the U8 Pre Travel Program.

Over the course of 8 weeks all players will go through age specific training to help develop the players’ ability and help increase their knowledge of the basic principles of play. Each week, 2 sessions will take place which are run by professional coaches, led by our academy director. Players will be evaluated from week to week to track their growth and to ensure that they are placed on a team where they fit best. At the conclusion, all players in the program will take part in the pre travel tournament, which takes place on June 2rd and 3th.

For more information on the U8 Pre Travel Program, please select the following link:

- U8 Pre Travel Program -

We have also scheduled an information session for all parents of the U8 academy participant. We highly recommend that all parents of our U8 academy participants attend the event. During this event we will explain how the travel teams are formed. We will also discuss what it means to commit to a travel soccer team. 

Information Night – Incoming U9’s

Tuesday April 17th – 7:00PM – Location: Knights of Columbus, North Avenue

Incoming U10’s and U11’s – Age Group Academies

Anyone born in 2009 (incoming U10’s) or born in 2008 (incoming U11’s) will need to register for an age group academy. This includes all current travel players and any non-travel players (Intercountry) who want to be considered for a 2018-19 travel team. 

Over the course of 8 weeks all players will go through age specific training under the guidance of an academy director, supported by the WSA professional staff. We believe that running an 8 week academy style program is more beneficial when evaluating all interested players. Players will continue to train, with professional coaches, while assessing and evaluating all players in a group. This should limit the stress on all players taking part. They get to train and play throughout the process. 

In these formative years, movement of players between teams is very common and we want to ensure that we have enough information on all players to place them on the right team for the following year. This program is open for anyone who is interested to play travel and all current travel players should take part. 

In addition to the academy evaluations, we will also ask the head coach and professional coach for each team to fill out a player evaluation. These evaluations are also part of the decision-making process. For Intercounty players, we will solicit evaluations from our Intercounty trainers.  

This academy program will replace 1 of the weekly practice sessions for all our U9 and U10 travel teams through April and May.

It is a necessity to take part in this program if you want to be considered for an U10 or U11 travel, but taking part does not guarantee you a spot on a travel team. 

Year of Birth

Gender

Day

Time

Location

Start & End Date

2009

Boys

Monday

5:00-6:30PM

Houlihan

3/19 Through 5/14 (Skip 4/2)

2009

Girls

Tuesday

3:30-5:00PM

Houlihan

3/20 Through 5/22 (Skip 4/3)

**Week added due to prior weather cancelation.

2008

Boys

Monday

3:30-5:00PM

Houlihan

3/19 Through 5/14 (Skip 4/2)

2008

Girls

Tuesday

5:00-6:30PM

Houlihan

3/20 Through 5/22(Skip 4/3)

**Week added due to prior weather cancelation

- Register now by clicking this link - 

Incoming U12’s (2007) & U13’s (2006) – Evaluation Festivals

On May 5th and May 19th (for boys) and May 12th and May 19th (for girls), we will run evaluation festivals for all current travel and non-travel (Intercounty) players interested in our travel program, born in 2006 and 2007. We have opted for 2 festival style selection events during which players will be placed on teams. During these evaluation festivals, these teams will play competitive games in a 7v7, 9v9 and/or 11v11 format. We will have professional staff around those 2 days to assess the players when they compete with and against their peers. 

In addition to the evaluation festivals, player placement decisions are also based on the feedback we gather from the professional coach and parent head coach for each team. 

For Intercounty players, we will solicit evaluations from our Intercounty trainers.

It is a necessity to take part in these events if you want to be considered for a travel team at U12 and U13 for the 2018-2019 seasons but taking part does not guarantee you a spot on a travel team.

Below are all the dates/times:

Year of birth

Age Group Fall 2018

May 5th

May 12th

May 19th

2007

Incoming U12 Boys

12:00PM-1:30PM

 

1:45PM-3:15PM

2006

Incoming U13 Boys

1:45PM-3:15PM

 

12:00PM-1:30PM

2007 Incoming U12 Girls  

12:00PM-1:30PM

1:45PM-3:15PM

2006 Incoming U13 Girls  

1:45PM-3:15PM

12:00PM-1:30PM

 

All Festival evaluations will take place at the turf fields of the Wardlaw Hartridge School.

- Register now by clicking this link - 

U14’s, U15’s,U16’s & U17’s (2002-2005) – Open Practice Sessions

All players who are interested in joining the WSA travel program in these age groups will be asked to take part in several practice sessions with a current team. This way, all potential future peers are seen together. It gives the coach, supported by additional WSA staff, the opportunity to assess/evaluate all players. All players, current and new, will be assessed/evaluated! Combined with the player evaluations done during the Spring season, this will help the WSA work out who to invite to play for a travel team in these age groups, starting the Fall of 2018. 

All these sessions will take place in May. Click the link below to sign up.

http://www.westfieldnjsoccer.com/travel-program-u9-u19/open-practice-sheet

Final notes:

On Tuesday April the 17th we will host an information evening. During this event we will further explain the process to all parents who would like to receive more information on the process. We will also provide all in attendance with the opportunity to ask questions.

Information Night – Travel Team Formation

  • Tuesday April 17th – 8:00PM – Location: Knights of Columbus, North Avenue

All travel team selections will be announced on Sunday June 10th 2018.