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NCSA Celebrates Its 50th Year

Northern Counties Soccer Assn of NJ (NCSA), in its 50th year, provides a competitive league for over 80 clubs/1000 teams in the northeast NJ & nearby NY.  NCSA began in the Fall of 1973 with about 10 clubs. The 2022-2023 season marks the 50th year of league play, now with about 80 clubs and over 1000 teams. Our commemorative 50th anniversary logo is above, selected from many entries by our players, coaches and parents in a design contest held last Spring. Watch for notices of special events to honor NCSA's 50 years of organizing competitive play for its many participants.

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NCSA 2022 Scholarship Winners Announced

NCSA is pleased to announce our 2021 Scholarship Winners!

 Thank you to all of the seniors that applied for the NCSA Scholarship this year. We wish you all well in the next chapter of your journey.

The NCSA 2022 Girls Scholarship Winner is Caroline S.. Caroline has played for the Dragons Soccer Club for over ten (10) years and went on to play for Westwood High School as a four (4) year varsity player. Caroline has an extensive resume outside of soccer where she has volunteered her time and given back to her community through numerous camps, soccer programs, basketball programs and religious programs.  She will be attending Arcadia University playing for the Women’s Soccer program. 

The NCSA 2022 Boys Scholarship Winner is Ty P..  Ty was a member of the American’s Soccer Club for fourteen (14) years and went on to play at Northern Highlands Regional High School where he was captain of the Freshman team, as well as the Varsity Team. Ty also was on the Principal’s List / Honor Roll during his high school education, has a wide-range of volunteer work and has achieved the level of Eagle Scout. Ty will be attending Syracuse University.

Congratulations to Caroline and Ty and best of luck to you both!

 

NCSA Scholarship Committee

Dennis Burns, Diane Pinto, Jeff Schneider and Lou Hegyi

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Spring 2022 Flight Winners

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL!!!

SPRING 2022 FLIGHT WINNERS

BOYS    
FLIGHT WINNER CO-WINNER
B9A Hoboken-B09A-Thakkar Montclair-B09A-Crossen
B9B Torpedoes-B09B-Samman  
B9C SilverLakeAcademy-B09C-Reihhold  
B9DB Tenafly-B09DB-Reiser  
B9DW Mahwah-B09DW-Martin  
B9E WorldClassFC-B09E-Leone  
B9FB Thistle-B09FB-Kolbinger Tenafly-B09FB-Schwartzberg, AviatorsHHSA-B09FB-Wells
B9FW Maywood-B09FW-Gonzalez  
B9GB SilverLakeAcademy-B09GB-Dorazio  
B9GW GlenRock-B09GW-Olenick  
B9HB CougarSC-B09HB-Kolodiy  
B9HW WorldClassFC-B09HW-Leone  
B10A Torpedoes-B10A-Woessner  
B10B RiverDell-B10B-Stein Hoboken-B10B-Frasier, NoBergen-B10B-Romero  
B10C Ironbound-B10C-Costa  
B10D Clarkstown-B10D-Fernandez  
B10E Ajax-B10E-Kalata  
B10FB Montclair-B10FB-Patel  
B10FW Americans-B10FW-Simon  
B10G Montclair-B10G-Shortt  
B11A World ClassFC-B11A-Jacobs  
B11B Dragons-B11B-Garcia  
B11CB Nutley-B11CB-Crumrine  
B11CW Montclair-B11CW-Lubenesky  
B11DB Belleville-B11DB-Serron  
B11DW Warriors-B11DW-Gabriele  
B11E Dumont-B11E-Golas  
B11F Americans-B11F-Brusselback  
B12A Maroons-B12A-Steketee  
B12B Spartans-B12B-Munoz  
B12CB Ironbound-B12C-Liborio  
B12CW RYSA-B12CW-STRUBLE  
B12D Fairview-B12D-Macias  
B12E Clarkstown-B12E-Dominguez  
B12F Montclair-B12F-Heinrich  
B13A Tenafly-B13A-Aldeco  
B13B RdgfldPk-B13B-Long  
B13C DenofLions-B13C-Barreiro  
B13CB AviatorsHHSA-B13CB-Oettinger  
B13D Lyndhurst-B13D-Andrinopoulos  
B13E NoRockland-B13E-Henery  
B13EB ElmwoodPk-B13EB-Fakhoury  
B14A Mahwah-B14A-Palentchar  
B14B Dragons-B14B-Ferreira  
B14C Harrison-B14C-Flores  
B14D NewMilford-B14D-Gugliotta  
B14E Americans-B14E-Gupta  
B15A JerseyCity-B15A-DePaz  
B15C Hoboken-B15C-Blake  
B15D RIDGFLD-B15D-Diaz  
B16B Tenafly-B16B-Schwartz  
B16C Emerson-B16C-Mancino   
B16E Torpedoes-B16E-Dzilla  
B17A NoValley-B17A-Lago  
B17B Belleville-B17B-Castro  
B19A Hoboken-B19A-Sanchez  
B19B Warriors-B19B-Raffaele  
B19C Nutley-B19C-Scarpelli  
     
GIRLS    
FLIGHT WINNER CO-WINNER
G9A Torpedoes-G09A-Alzola  
G9B Maroons-G09B- O'Hara  
G9C Spartan-G09-Beiter  
G9DB Torpedoes-G09DB-Beucler  
G9DW Nutley-G09DW-Lohf  
G9EB FairlawnAllSports-G09EB-Cepeda  
G9EW Thistle-G09EW-Kealyx  
G9FB N.Rockland-G09FB-McEnery  
G9FW HotSpur-G09FW-Polizzotti  
G9GB Tenafly-G09GB-Dayton  
G9GW Force-G09GW-Dam  
G10A Torpedoes-G10A-Santana  
G10B Montclair-G10B-St. Pierre  
G10CB Verona-G10CB-Curtin  
G10CW Aviators-G10CW-Karcic  
G10D Hotspur-G10D-Harrington  
G10E Nutley-G10E-Misner  
G10FB Torpedoes-G10FB-Grados  
G10FW Wizards-G10FW-Kovacs  
G11A Hoboken-G11A-Snyder  
G11B WayneBG-G11B-Corradino  
G11C Bayonne-G11C-Halsey  
G11D SaddleBR-G11D-Mudzinski  
G11E Tenafly-G11E-Oelsner  
G11FB WoodRidge-G11FB-Katz  
G11FW Bergenfield-G11FW-Arango  
G12A Verona-G12A-Scott  
G12B Torpedoes-G12B-Gmiterek  
G12C Warriors-G12C-Scrivanich  
G12DB Hoboken-G12DB-Mariniello  
G12DW Arsenal-G12DW-Schrager  
G12EB Bergenfield-G12EB-Cortez  
G12EW Torpedoes-G12EW-Restrepo  
G12FB RdgfldPk-G12FB-Neto  
G12FW Americans-G12FW-Shikhman  
G13 Force-G13A-Duffell  
G13B Verona-G13B-Rossi  
G12CB Hoboken-G13CB-McCue  
G13CW CougarUtd-G13CW-Spelbrink  
G13D WayneBG-G13D-Cisneros  
G13E Wizards-G13E-Barillari  
G14A RYSA-G14A-Frederick  
G14B WayneBG-G14B-Burke  
G14C Warriors-G14C-Tencza  
G14D GlenRock-G14D-Hendl  
G15A Force-G15A-Key  
G15B FairLawnAllSports-G15B-Ragusa  
G15C RiverDell-G15C-Nippes  
G19A Bayonne-G19A-Martin  
G19B Warriors-G19B-castaneda  
G19C Maroons-G19C-Manning  
G19D ElmwoodPk-G19D-Ceballos  
G19E Wallkill-G19E-Bartko  
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NCSA Online Store

NCSA is pleased to announce that we have a store where you can purchase NCSA merchandise. The store is hosted by Squad Locker. Please take advantage of the 15% discount code now available.

,

NCSA is pleased to announce that we have an online store where you can purchase NCSA merchandise. The store is hosted by Squad Locker. Please take advantage of the 15% discount code now available.

 
The store is live and is ready to go!
Coupon codeNCSA15 to save 15% starting today through June 3
 
Don't wait - get your NCSA gear today!!
 
,

NCSA is pleased to announce that we have an online store where you can purchase NCSA merchandise. The store is hosted by Squad Locker. Please take advantage of the 15% discount code now available.

 
The store is live and is ready to go!
Coupon codeNCSA15 to save 15% starting today through June 3
 
Don't wait - get your NCSA gear today!!
 
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NCSA 50th Anniversary Logo Contest Winners

We received many creative and impressive entries for the 50th Anniversary Logo Design Contest.

Thank you all for taking the time and effort to be a part of our anniversary celebration.

We look forward to sharing the winning design and celebrating this special milestone with the entire NCSA family!

 

CONGRATULATIONS TO EVERYONE!!!!!

 

Division Winner
8 Mika G.
9 Faith C.
10 Eleanor C.
11 Madeline L.
13 Rohan G.
14 Avinash S.
15 Daniel P.
16 Samantha H.
   
FINAL WINNER Alan D.

 

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BERMUDA TRIANGLE

Reprinted from Soccer America, Youth Soccer Insider, June 28, 2022

The Bermuda Triangle is an urban legend focused on a loosely-defined region in the western part of the North Atlantic Ocean where a number of aircraft and ships are said to have disappeared under mysterious circumstances. The Bermuda Triangle in our beautiful game of youth soccer is composed of three elements: Parents, Coaches and Referees. It sucks up the beauty and fairness of the game, creates a toxic environment and causes an immense shortage of referees and it is not an urban legend.

I left out the most important element of youth soccer from the Bermuda Triangle: The players.

All other elements of the Bermuda Triangle are there to serve the players. The players are the victims and not the villains of this toxic environment. Rarely in the older youth groups, some players might act like villains challenging the referee, but the referees are there to manage them and control the game. That is engrained in the art of refereeing. 

There is another triangle related with youth sports which has positive results unlike the Bermuda Triangle. “The athletic triangle consists of the coach, athlete, and parent and the relationships within this triad can have significant impact on the psychological development of the child.”  

Let us investigate all three vertices of the soccer Bermuda Triangle:

The Parents:  In our pay-to-play system of youth soccer, most Parents are customers to the club. In that context the players are the consumers. The exceptions are those Parents whose kids play either with a scholarship or for a free-to-play club. Since they pay some amount of money – in some cases a lot of money – they feel they are entitled. They are entitled to yell at the referee, to ask for their kids to have more playing time, to criticize the coach and the club. Unfortunately, most Parents are not very knowledgeable of the game since soccer culture has not infiltrated into our sports culture as much as in other “football” countries. They sometimes view the game from the lenses of other team sports.  

The most toxic product delivered by the Parents are the maltreatment of young referees. This maltreatment ranges from yelling at referees to bullying them after the game. Although very rare, Parents have been seen in physically altercations with the referees. This aggression in return causes a very low retention rate among young referees. 

There are some very remarkable individual efforts to metamorphize this toxic environment like Skye Eddy Bruce’s Soccer Parenting Association whose mission is “to elevate the game and enhance every child’s youth soccer experience by engaging, educating, empowering, supporting and advocating for Parents.” 

There are also organizational efforts by leagues and associations to curb this toxic environment against officials using disciplinary measures.

The issue between the Parents and the Coaches/the Club arises from the same entitlement feeling that is also being fueled by “to win the game at all costs” idea that is prevalent in all youth sports. Unfortunately, this is not unique to our country. You can observe similar approaches in other football countries. 

The Parent vertex can only be improved with the joint efforts of the Club and other organizations. For example, a good starting point for Clubs might be to educate the Parents with some of the basics of the Laws of the Game. 

The Coaches: In our youth soccer landscape, we have volunteer and professional coaches. Some of the coaches have licenses and certificates and some of them do not. They are in the limelights to develop the players. Whether all of them know all the intricacies of player development or if they know whether they can implement them properly is not the issue in this triangle. The issue is the pressure they receive either to win the games or give more playing time from the Parents and/or the Club. Being usually a non-profit organization, the elected Club Board might cave into the demands of the Parents.   

Coaches with a pressure to win might reflect their frustrations on the young referees who are their scapegoats. This also creates a toxic environment. Adults verbally criticizing and pressuring teenagers for their decisions. As long as the pressure to win exists, some of the Coaches will adhere to this sidetrack. The key thing is to redefine player development in the Club culture. If the Club can convince the Parents that player development is not there just to develop their ball skills but enhance their characters, then a new non-toxic environment can be created. The Clubs should create “Better citizens, better persons and better players” in that order. This will also release a lot of pressure from the Coaches. 

Does the Club have a Club culture? Does the Club have an age-based curriculum with a sound player development approach? Does the Club implement a Player Development Philosophy? 

Positive answers to the above questions or an effort to answer them affirmatively will improve the relations between the three vertices. 

The Referees The referees – especially the young ones - are usually seen as the victims of this triangle. But is there anything we can do to help them so that they are not sucked in by the Bermuda Triangle?

When I used to teach young referees in a face-to -ace setting some years ago, I always started the course asking them why they want to referee. All of them had the same answer: “I am in for the money.” Before they started refereeing, they did not realize the harassment, they might get doing their jobs for a few dollars. Most of them come from middle-class families. They can easily find another job that pays as well or less but without the harassment they face on the soccer field. Other young soccer referees in other football countries might have the ambition to referee in professional leagues as their driving force. I did not hear a single American teenager with that goal in life. We must create other “carrots” other than money for the teenagers to chose refereeing as a hobby. For example, character development things like “learn leadership.” “increase self-confidence,” “being assertive."

U.S. Soccer recently increased the starting age for referees to 13. This was a positive step because I personally believe any kid younger than 13 years can neither handle the stress nor comprehend the LOTG well. To boost new registrants, U.S. Soccer now has an online part to teach the LOTG and an on-the-field part for entry level referees. They made the process easier, shorter, and more suitable for young kids. The key component from there on are the assignors and the State Referee Committees.  After they complete their entry course, these young referees are thrown in front of the lions.

The system must provide them with mentorship and/or coaching in their first six months. This means the more experienced referees must be used in this process. Unfortunately, very few experienced referees will spend gratis time to help the referees. So the system must find resources to solve this problem. If not, typically most young referees will quit after a year.

The other problem are the assignors. They are under pressure to find referees for a big number of games. The demand is there, but the supply is not. Usually most of them do not spend too much time on how they can help young referees to develop their refereeing skills but focus on filling the gaps. One of the ways to solve this problem is to use single referees in most youth games, especially in non-competitive games and/or games of U14 and under. This is what is done in other football countries. Unfortunately, there is pressure from the Parents onto the Coaches and from the Coaches to the Club to demand a full crew as if they were playing a professional league.

The other solution is for the State Referee Committees to have more control over the Assignors, monitoring them on whether they are prioritizing the development of the referees over filling in the gaps. So there are several things where the third vertex can do a better job to avoid being sucked into the Bermuda Triangle. This time the responsibility is with the System.

To summarize, for the Bermuda Triangle not to suck up the beauty and fairness of the game, not to create a toxic environment and not cause an immense shortage of referees there are a lot of ways and means to address the problem. For the two vertices (Parents and the Coaches), the solution is developing and enhancing our Club environment, the last vertex -- the Referees- is the responsibility of our soccer system.

Ahmet Guvener (ahmet.g@thegameplanners.com) is a Partner with The Game Planners, LLC and the former Secretary General and Chief Soccer Officer of the Turkish FA. He was also the Head of Refereeing for the Turkish FA. He served as a Panel member for the FIFA Panel of Referee Instructors and UEFA Referee Convention. He now lives and works as a soccer consultant in Georgetown, TX.

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EXPLANATION OF DIFFERENT TYPE SCHEDULES

We receive questions and game change requests that suggest some confusion about schedules which vary based upon number of teams in a flight as well as the level of the flight.  Here is an explanation of the differences in flights and special rules that apply.  These rules are part of the NCSA Rules of Competition, but are stated more simply and answer associated questions that everyone wants to know: (a) is my entire schedule already posted on the website; (b) if yes, by when must we play all currently scheduled games; (c) or if not, how are additional games determined; and (d) if there are additional games, then by when must we play (i) already scheduled games and (ii) additional games to be scheduled.

8 TEAM PLAYOFF FLIGHTS

These are the Playoff flights: B09A, B10A, B10B, B11A, B11B, B12A, B12B, B13A, B13B, B14A, B14B, B15AG9A, G10A, G11A, G12B, G13B

  • You will play a total of 10 games
  • Only the first 7 games are scheduled in weeks 1-7
  • You must play these games by 5/9 (week 7) for results to count in standings to seed weeks 8-9-10
  • At the end of games for 5/9, the match-ups for week 8 (1 hosting 8, 2 hosting 7, etc.) to be played on 5/16 will be posted
  • The actual game time and field MUST be scheduled by the home team by 11 am Monday based upon its field availability and fitting with existing schedule of games in order to be timely to be assigned referees for the game.
  • The last 2 steps are repeated for week 9 (5/23 game) and week 10 (6/6 game) with higher seeded team hosting lower seeded team in winners’ and loser’s brackets

8 TEAM MBOS (MATCHES BASED ON STANDINGS) FLIGHTS

These are the MBOS flights: B17A

  • You will play a total of 10 games
  • Only the first 7 games are scheduled in weeks 1-7
  • You must play these games by 5/9 (week 7) for results to count in standings to seed weeks 8-9-10
  • At the end of games for 5/9, the match-ups for weeks 8, 9 and 10 will be posted (1 through 4 playing each other a second time, 5 through 8 playing each other a second time
  • The actual game time and field MUST be scheduled by the home team by 11 am Monday based upon its field availability and fitting with existing schedule of games in order to be timely to be assigned referees for the game.

8 TEAM INTERLEAGUE GAMES

These are the Interleague flights: G13A, G14A and G15A

  • You will play a total of 9 games
  • All games are included in the original schedule, with the first game in week 0 (3/14)
  • You must schedule the first games against SJGSL teams – please submit a game change to NCSA so our records are current and so that you can produce an MDF and report scores
  • Week 5 (4/25) NCSA teams host SJGSL teams – while you may have these games scheduled to hold a slot in the initial schedule, you will need to confirm date and time and adjust schedules as needed
  • All games count in standings and must be played by season end date of 6/22

7-8 TEAM FULL SCHEDULE FLIGHTS

All other 7-8 team flights are full schedule flights.

  • You will play 9 games in 9 weeks if 8 teams; you will play 9 games in 10 weeks and have one or 2 weeks off if 7 teams
  • Weeks 1 and 2 repeat in weeks 8 and 9 – the 2 teams off in week 8 and 9 will be scheduled against each other in week 10 so all teams get 9 games
  • All games to be played are already included in the posted schedule
  • You must play all games by the season end date of 6/22.

11-12 TEAM FLIGHTS

  • You will play 10 games if 11 teams, with one week off; you will play 11 games if 12 teams with no weeks off
  • The 11 weeks of games are scheduled starting in week 0 (3/14) with all week 0 games as a TBS(L)
  • All games to be played are already included in the posted schedule
  • You must play all games by the season end date of 6/22.

9-10 TEAM FLIGHTS

  • You will play 9 games in 9 weeks if 10 teams; you will play 9 games in 10 weeks and have one week off if 9 teams
  • One team will have a 10th game to give the “odd” team (team off in week 10) its 9th game
  • All games to be played are already included in the posted schedule
  • You must play all games by the season end date of 6/22.

5-6 TEAM FLIGHTS

  • You will play 10 games in 10 weeks if 6 teams; you will play 8 games in 10 weeks and have 2 weeks off if 5 teams
  • Flights are rarely set at 5 teams, but usually occur when a team drops after flighting and scheduling is complete – we encourage teams to schedule an additional game as a friendly to play a minimum of 9 games
  • All games to be played are already included in the posted schedule
  • You must play all games by the season end date of 6/22.

 

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