Q: At what age may my daughter begin participating? A: Our youngest age group is U6 (4-5 year olds).
Q: How long is the season? A: In house age groups play from the beginning of September until the end of October. Travel age groups start in early August and continue playing until mid-November.
Q: What equipment is needed to participate? A: All players must wear shin guards. Players should also have their own ball and something to drink at each practice or game. Soccer shoes (cleats) are recommended but not required.
Q: What size ball should my child be using? A: U6 uses size #3; U8 to U12 use size #4; U14 Travel uses a size #5 ball.
Q: When will I hear about team rosters, practice dates and times? A: For in-house age groups, due to the typical large number of late registrations, you will hear from coaches toward the end of August. In-house schedules should be released shortly before opening day in early September. For travel players, evaluations take place in early June. Evaluation dates will be posted once they are finalized and should be listed on this website by mid-May. After the evaluations, it will take a week or so to finalize travel teams and get word out to the participants.
Q: What's the difference between Travel and In-house? A: Travel teams are chosen based on player's ability whereas in-house teams are more balanced, so that there is team parity in a given league. Travel players will be paired with other similarly talented players and play against comparable travel teams. Travel is generally geared towards more competitive play, although there are travel teams at all levels and we attempt to place travel teams in appropriately competitive leagues. Travel teams play half their games AWAY, meaning we travel to other fields, usually 15-20 minutes either side of the Beltway (I-695). Travel teams play games only on weekends and may participate in one or more tournaments each season. In-house games take place weekdays and/or Saturdays.
Q: What equipment is provided by the program? A: All in-house age groups receive a uniform which consists of shirt; shorts and socks. Players keep this equipment at the end of the season. Travel participants also receive jersey, shorts and socks. We try to reuse the travel uniforms, but the process varies each year.
Q: Where will practices/games take place? A: All in-house U6 & U8 sessions take place at Warren Park Place (on York Road, about 300 yards north of Warren Road, behind the senior center.) In-house U10 can use Warren Park Place or Warren Elementary. U12 sessions take place at Warren Elementary School. For travel teams: U8 home games are played at Warren Park Place, but practice can be at Warren Park Place or Warren Elementary; U10 and U12 home games and practices are played at Warren Elementary School; and U14 home games & practices are played at either Meadowood Park or Cockeysville Middle School, depending on field availability.
Q: What days does my daughter have soccer? A: In-house: All in-house teams will have soccer one weeknight and also Saturday morning. Weeknights and times will vary each season. Travel: Travel teams usually practice two weeknights and play games on Sunday afternoons. Some travel teams may opt to enter a second league and therefore will also have games on Saturdays. Currently, the U8-U12 teams practice on Tues & Thurs; the U14 teams practice on Mon & Wed. These days are subject to change though.
Q: How long is each session? A: In-house sessions are between 60-75 minutes duration. The season starts with weekday sessions beginning at 6:00pm. As we move into fall, the start time will gradually move up so that weekday sessions begin by 5:45pm (early October) and 5:30pm for the last 2-3 weeks. Saturday sessions will begin at 8:45 and run through about 1pm.
Travel team weekday practices last 75-90 minutes and begin at 6:00 early in season. As we move into the season, session start times will adjust commensurate with In-house. Weekend practices or scrimmages may be scheduled at the coaches' discretion, however games are scheduling by the leagues we play in. ABSP (CYO) Sunday games start between 12 noon and 4:30pm. If travel teams also participate in a Saturday league, games may be any time.
Q: Is there any other advice for parents and players? A: All parents, coaches and participants should be mindful of the parental code of conduct signed at registration and the general rules of fair sportsmanship. As players (and their parents) climb the ladder of competitive soccer, please be sure to keep ambitions in line with spirit of the game.
Remember that each participant must wear shin guards to all practices and games. Rules also forbid hard jewelry of any type. This covers, but is not limited to: earrings, necklaces, armbands, hair beads and watches. IF your daughter is contemplating pierced ears, please get them after the season. Otherwise, because earrings must be kept in newly pierced ears for several weeks without removal, your child faces having to sit out games, or (at the travel level) receiving a yellow-card for disobeying safety rules referees are required to enforce.