Showcase Saturday

One of the features of the new Southern California Developmental Soccer League (SCDSL- phew!  It’s a mouthful!) is the addition of Showcases instead of a traditional League Cup.  Here’s a description from the SCDSL…

The SCDSL Showcases are meant as a developmental tool based on the philosophy of the SCDSL. Each showcase is age specific and all teams in each age group come together at one venue to play 2 games in a day. The teams play to play. Games do not count in standings. It is not a tournament so there are no winners, losers or trophies. This is an opportunity for players to play without the pressure of winning and for the coaches to be able to move players around, try different positions, work on the technical aspects of the game and, as the players get older, work on the tactical aspects of the game. When winning does not become the soul purpose of the game, the kids are given the chance to develop as players and enjoy the game they love.

I’ve really enjoyed the Showcases and especially like seeing friends from other teams at the same age level and the ability to watch multiple teams play.  The SCDSL is very accommodating and we were able to change our schedule so that our coach could be there for both games.  I really do think that they are trying to do the right thing for kids.

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The girls (and parents!) enjoy being together as we usually set up camp as a team and hang out for the day.  Certain teams (who shall remain nameless…lol) take the party atmosphere a bit too far and inspired a very stern “no alcohol” email from the league.  It looked like they were having fun, but I’m tired enough after being in the sun all day- I don’t think I’d be able to drive home after drinking margaritas!

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As mentioned in the official description, it is a time where coaches are encouraged to try some different things and give bench players more playing time.  Big soccer girl doesn’t usually start, but she started both games, played the entire first game and most of the second.  It’s also a time where the player pass is used extensively (more about this another day) and girls who may be playing up are brought down to help their own age level team.  This can be developmentally appropriate if that player is not getting enough play time where they are, or it can just be a coach trying to win at all costs.

Big soccer girl is on the top team at her club at her age level, but she could use a confidence builder and some more time on the ball.  So, she’s going to be guesting with the third team (they have a great and enthusiastic coach) at her club at their showcase this weekend.  It will be interesting to see how this works out…will it be a developmentally appropriate experience for her or will it annoy players and parents on that team as well as their opponents?  I’ll keep you posted.