Meet the New NorCal Clubs: Part 1
After a long application process designed to make sure that each entity is up to the highest standards, NorCal Premier Soccer accepted 19 new clubs into the fold, starting with the fall 2020 season.
Joining NorCal Premier will be Alum Rock Youth Soccer League, AYSO East Bay, AYSO Silicon Valley, East Palo Alto United Soccer Club, Escuela Oficial Richmond-Rayados, Hollister Tremors Youth Soccer, Infinity Sports Club, Konocti Premier Soccer Club, Legends Soccer Club Sacramento, Madera United Futbol Club, Northern Nevada Soccer Club, North Valley Youth Soccer League, River Islands Futbol Club, Sierra United Soccer Club, Stockton TLJ FC, Silicon Valley Eagles, Turlock PSG, West Coast Soccer Club Tracy, and West Sacramento Soccer Club.
But who are these new clubs and what are their values? Over the next three days, NorCal will introduce its membership to the newest clubs it will be competing against.
Let’s meet the clubs:
Alum Rock Youth Soccer League
Founded in 1971 in San Jose, Alum Rock Youth Soccer League looks to help players from the most underserved parts of the city excel on one of its 22 teams that feature over 250 total players.
“As a club, we try to provide a family environment,” said ARYSL Director of Coaching Carlos Villarreal. “The majority of our coaches are educators who work at schools or in the community and because of this we are able to connect our players’ families with services they may need.”
“We have worked hard to be a part of NorCal,” Villarreal added. “Thank you to all who had the confidence in Alum Rock, we look forward to competing and providing this opportunity to our players and families.”
AYSO East Bay
Based out of Martinez, AYSO East Bay are one of two AYSO-affiliated clubs to join NorCal Premier Soccer this year.
Featuring 26 teams, the program originally evolved from an existing Pleasant Hill/Martinez area AYSO program before becoming an AYSO United Club in 2017.
“Our goals are simply what everyone else wants for their own clubs, to compete with the best, to provide a pathway for kids from the grassroots of the sport to the very top,” said Director of Coaching Dave Adams. “We want to have a club where families can be together through the entire process, where we can make professional coaches out of parents and have people involved because they love it. We want to have NPL teams, we want our kids going off to play in college. To have all of these elements and do it ethically, at a cost that is reasonable, is a huge goal of ours.”
AYSO Silicon Valley
Taking the field in Sunnyvale, ASYO Silicon Valley are the second of the two AYSO programs to join NorCal this year.
Featuring nine different teams in the organization, Silicon Valley were founded in 2017 with the premise of introducing their players to the competitive soccer world.
“We offer at least 50 percent playing time for all players. Players develop in many ways, but we firmly believe that game time experience is beneficial to every player’s long-term development,” said AYSO Silicon Valley’s Phillip M. Grant. “Our most important goal is creating a positive environment for soccer players to develop. We believe creating a positive environment will give players a chance to love the game which will allow them to reach their potential.”
“We are very excited to be accepted into NorCal Premier,” Grant added. “NorCal not only offers a level of consistency on every playing level, but their vision of supporting coach education is an important aspect that we share. Kids are going to love the State Cup and parents are going to enjoy shorter drives on average for games.”
East Palo Alto United Soccer Club
East Palo Alto United Soccer Club was founded in 2018 with the club’s fundamental vision surrounding the care for the city’s youth communities by providing a positive outlet through sports.
Starting off with three teams in their inaugural NorCal season, the club will look to grow in the coming years by taking core philosophies from founder Agapito Mendoza.
“Mendoza was a great example of a community leader,” said club President Lucero Garcia. “Since his passing, our club has focused on the quality over quantity in keeping Agapito’s core values in mind. Through his leadership, our staff and coaches will continue to encourage our community to become consistent, knowledgeable, and responsible on and off the field.
“In our community we work with helping underprivileged families and we get most of our word out through our local community partners who are working with our city to spread sports awareness.”
Escuela Oficial Richmond-Rayados
Playing out of the East Bay, Escuela Oficial Richmond-Rayados are the second club in California to form an official partnership with legendary Mexican club C.F. Monterrey.
Through their unique partnership and sharing of methodologies, each and every player is trained in the Monterrey way, which includes twice-yearly visits and evaluations from the LIGA MX side.
Founded last year, the club features three teams and also pushes an emphasis on steering youth players away from drugs, alcohol, and violence off the field.
“We are a program that focuses on the full development of the future citizens of Richmond and its surroundings — we care about our players on and off the field,” said club President Sergio M. Garcia Romero. “It is important to us that our players feel pride in their identity. We want them to feel proud of who they are, where they come from and what they are able to achieve in life and on the field. We will provide them with the necessary tools and supportive atmosphere.”
Hollister Tremors Youth Soccer
With roughly 700 players in their recreational program, Hollister Tremors Youth Soccer is one of the largest clubs joining NorCal Premier Soccer this year.
Those 700 players feed into 17 competitive teams for this volunteer-run club that hopes to only grow from here on out after being founded all the way back in 1989.
“Our goal as an organization is to be committed to developing successful, well-rounded individuals on and off the field,” said Patrick Perham of the Hollister Tremors. “We provide a fun and nurturing environment for all ages to learn the great game of soccer. We strive to prepare athletes for the next level of competition, through age appropriate training and a positive development environment.”
“Being accepted to NorCal allows opportunities for our teams to compete at the highest level. It also opens off the field opportunities for our coaches to extend their education and techniques, providing growth to our players and club,” Perham added. “We are thankful and honored that NorCal has accepted us into their soccer family. We look forward to a long-running relationship.”