Story

Ava’s Soccer Story

Ava's Soccer Story

Preface

Ava’s Soccer Story began before she was even conceived. Her father had predestined that she would become a soccer star! Since she was about two years old, he has worked hard with her to achieve that goal. She just turned six years old but coaches and parents that see her play already say, “She’s going to be a star.” “She has an amazing future ahead.” Their jaws drop at her level of skill and some have even inquired about getting her autograph.

This is Ava’s Story, This is Ava’s life, This is who Ava is – She is soccer.

 

Chapter 1: Birth to Age 3 – Introduction to Soccer

Some might say Ava was born (July 21, 2012) with a soccer ball at her feet. They aren’t far from the truth! Cue totally adorable [embarrassing] baby photo.Ava's Soccer Story

Ava started playing soccer in May 2014, with Lil Kickers. It is offered by Sports Connections in Charlotte, NC. They did lots of cute things like chase and pop bubbles, play with a parachute, and of course dribble and score goals. She really liked being the goalie, hehe.

Ava's Soccer StoryNext, we registered her in Soccer Shots where she participated in multiple seasons (8 half hour sessions) plus three, week-long summer camps. She started out with the Mini program (ages 2-3) and finished in the Classic (ages 3-5).

In the fall of 2016, she joined the Mini Kickers, now know as Tiny Tykes (ten 45 minute sessions). This program is offered by Challenger Sports in Jacksonville, NC. The coach’s help the kids “develop their balance, agility, coordination, color recognition and numerical learning, along with increasing their confidence and social skills.” She had a lot of fun! Great program!

Ava's Soccer StoryChapter 2: Age 4 to 6 – Recreation Micro Soccer

Ava was now old enough to participate in recreation soccer, where she had her first real game experiences. We had just moved and were not familiar with the recreation soccer options in the area. Therefore, Ava was registered with three different clubs to see what each was like. The resulting schedules were [obviously] conflicting but we made practices and games work the best we could. Sometimes we left one game 10 minutes early to make another etc..

U5 Spring 2017

We want Ava to gain as much practice/experience as possible. Being a part of three clubs allowed for that. If practice was cancelled for one team, she still had two more practices with other clubs that week. Our sole commitment was what was best for Ava, and less so her commitment to the teams – if that makes sense.

Teams

Piney Green Soccer Club – Mudpuppies
Jacksonville Area Soccer Club – Tornado’s
Southwest Soccer Club – Avengers

Spring/Summer Camps

Jacksonville Area Soccer Association 04/17
Jacksonville Area Soccer Association 07/17

U6 Fall 2017

We opted for two clubs this season because Ava was starting Kindergarten. It was a good thing too because she has practices on Mon/Wed with New River and Tues/Thurs/Fri with Southwest. Many weekends she has three games, luckily with no conflicts.

Teams

Camp Lejeune/New River Youth Soccer – Blue Storm
Southwest Soccer Club – Avengers

The Camp Lejeune/New River Youth Soccer is run by the military – Marine Coaches with practices and games on military bases. These teams are co-ed and do not record score. Southwest U6 teams are also co-ed and do not record score.

U6 Spring 2018

Jacksonville Area Soccer Association – Fireants

JASA does not record score at this level and they are co-ed.

Ava's Soccer Story

Chapter 3: Playing Up and U7

U7 Spring 2018

Southwest Soccer Club (CAMSL League) – Lady Rockets

Upon registering Ava, the Director of Southwest Soccer Club recommended that Ava play up in age. So instead of U6, play U7, which is in the Coastal Area Mini Soccer League. It would be an all-girls team, for score. After some discussion we agreed to do this, with the option for her to go back to U6 should it not work out.

Ava's Soccer StoryThis season was very difficult for Ava, but it was an extremely important learning experience. In part, it was difficult because her father – trainer and mentor – was away for the entire season due to work. The girls were also bigger and faster; she had only just turned 5. She managed to score several goals in the first two games but quickly lost her confidence after repeated loses.

The team did not win a single game. She was the only one to score any goals the entire season. Ava did not score another goal until the Semi-Final in the season end tournament. What a goal it was, too! The parents were screaming with excitement; it was a beautiful moment.

Next season she will be of age to continue with U7, no more Micro Leagues. Her father will be home to continue with her training and she will come back even better than before! 

Spring/Summer Camps

Jacksonville Area Soccer Association 04/18
Coastal Area Soccer Association 06/18
Jacksonville Area Soccer Association  06/18
Challenger Sports British Soccer Camp – 06/18
East Duplin Soccer Camp – 07/18
JATA Camp – 08/18 (Check out the review here).

U7 Fall 2018
 

We are registering with two clubs for the fall season.

Teams

Camp Lejeune/New River Youth Soccer – FC United
Southwest Soccer Club – Lady Rockets

Chidi and I were asked to coach Ava’s Southwest team, we agreed. The Lady Rockets ended the season undefeated with Ava scoring 60+ goals in about 10 games. The team was awarded their Championship medals after coming in first place in the November 3rd, 2018 CAMSL tournament.

Watch the live video of the final game on Facebook here: Part I, Part II, as well as the medal ceremony here. Be sure to check out the Season Highlights video here.

Chapter 4: Intro to Wilmington Hammerheads Youth FC

 
U8/U9 Spring 2019

U9 – Wilmington Hammerheads Youth FC (WHYFC) – Hotspurs
U8 – Southwest Soccer Club (SWSC) – Lady Rockets

Wilmington Hammerheads Youth FC

Ava O Soccer - Wilmington Hammerheads Ava attended the Wilmington Hammerheads assessments/evaluations for the Juniors Program on January 28-29, 2019. After the first session, she was accepted to be on a team.

“Our teams our formed based on ability and after watching her video, she may be better suited with out 2010 girls that play 7v7 instead of our U8’s that play 5v5.” Justin Moose, Juniors Director. 

To Be Continued…

 

 
Ava’s story is just beginning. Follow her journey – she has an amazing future ahead.