What is SYSA?
The SYSA is a volunteer organization run by a Board comprised of parents. It is responsible for the administration of the town's soccer programs for children aged kindergarten through high school.
The Board generally meets monthly on the evening of the second Monday of the month. Board meetings are open to the public.
Specific questions can be addressed to Sandy Moore, SYSA Administrator, at 978-443-1321, firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can I tell if I have already registered my child?
Sign on to your AdminSports registration account. Your child's staus will read "Registered: Not Assigned"
Does the registration fee cover uniforms?
For U6-U8, U9/U10 In Town, and high school age players the registration fee includes a team shirt. The player's family is responsible for the rest of the required equipment, which consists of shin guards, soccer shorts and long soccer socks which must be worn over the shinguards. Cleats are strongly recommended but not required.
For U9-U14 BAYS (travel) players, the registration fee does not include the uniform. Uniforms are available for sale at Brines Sporting Goods in Sudbury. Parents will only have to purchase a new uniform (shirt, blue shorts and blue socks), when needed. Cleats and shinguards are required. Mouth guards are strongly recommended. Eye protections should be considered as well.
Are sessions cancelled due to the weather rescheduled?
Practices, U6-U8 sessions, and In-Town games are not rescheduled. BAYS' travel games are rescheduled per League rules.
Skills Academy sessions are not rescheduled.
Why no earrings or other jewelry?
The BAYS rule on this subject states: "Articles that may constitute a danger to the wearer or any other player must be removed, i.e. jewelry, watches, barrettes, chains, belts, head coverings with any visor or protrusions, etc." SYSA adheres to the BAYS rule. Earrings may not be taped.
What does our registration fee cover?
- The registration fee is set each year and is designed to cover the following program costs:
- Field usage charges by the town's Park & Recreation Department.
- Cost for referees for each match.
- Team equipment balls, shirts (U6-U8), discs.
- Insurance coverage and registration in MYSA (Massachusetts Youth Soccer Assn.)
- Training Clinics for referees, coaches and players.
- Basic Administrative costs of the SYSA organization.
- Any trophies and or participation awards given by the organization.
- Field equipment (goals, nets, corner flags, etc.)
What are the In-Town Intramural (IT) and Travel (BAYS) programs?
SYSA supports both an "In-Town" and a "Travel" soccer program. Both the Fall and Spring seasons are 10 weeks (games) long.
U8 and younger: All players in the under 8 age group play an in-town schedule in competition with other town teams. Theoretically, we try to make all the teams even in terms of talent. However, we have no way of predicting the ever-changing soccer talents of 5, 6 and 7 year old children. As a general rule of thumb, U6's play 3v3, U7's and U8's play 4v4.
U9 and U10: In the under 9/10 age bracket, all teams play 6v6 soccer and players have the choice of Travel (BAYS) or In-Town.
U11 and older: All players in the under 11 age group and older play on BAYS-affiliated travel teams. This is due to decreasing numbers of registered players as they grow older and the transition from 6v6 to 8v8 and 11v11 soccer. As a result, we cannot form enough town teams to make up a sensible schedule of town games. Under 11 and U12 players use the 8v8 format. We transition to 11v11 soccer in the under 14 age group.
The SYSA participates in the BAYS (Boston Area Youth Soccer, Inc.) Program to provide structure for it's travel program. We form over 50 travel teams playing against teams from other towns. Within BAYS, Division I teams are the most skilled, Division II teams are next most skilled, and so on -- at any age level. Divisions III, IV, and V may have more than one team from Sudbury placed in different sections within the same Division.
BAYS makes the final decision on Division placement for each team. Typically, a team is assigned to a section with teams from five other towns. Half of the season's games are played at opposing team's fields and half are home games. BAYS principal responsibility in placing and scheduling teams is to insure balanced teams in Divisions and Sections. Within this context consideration is given to travel convenience. Travel usually involve a trip of 20 to 60 minutes each way.
The Travel Program has a competitive focus, but still emphasizes fun, skill development, and reasonable participation. In the spring the section winners for the U12 and older age groups receive trophies and the U12-U19 Divisions 1 & 2 (with exceptions) winners are eligible to play in the Massachusetts Tournament of Champions (MTOC).
How are coaches selected?
The SYSA depends upon parents to volunteer as coaches. Unfortunately, volunteer coaches are often in short supply. If you think you might be interested, we encourage you to start coaching at the U6, U7 or U8 level, when practices consist of fun games (Farmers & Rabbits, Sharks & Minnows, etc.).
Please don't be reluctant to volunteer, even if you're not athletic and know nothing about soccer. Many of our most successful coaches never played soccer and are learning the sport along with their children!
Of course, because most of our volunteer coaches are not professional educators or soccer players, occasionally some parents feel their children are not receiving the best soccer instruction. If you find yourself in this situation, we suggest you pick up a book on soccer, come to a coaches' clinic, and volunteer your services. We can always use assistant coaches, and you will quickly discover the joy of watching the children improve their skills under your guidance.
Preference for coaching will be given to those who have completed or are taking licensing courses. You can contact the SYSA Administrator for more information about licensing courses.
Keep in mind that SYSA engages the services of New England Revolution Academy coaches to provide substantial professional soccer support services for players and coaches of all SYSA teams, both In-Town and Travel teams.
Who decides on which team my child will play?
For In-Town Intramural Program teams: For the U9/U10 In Town programs we strive to construct teams that are, as a team, balanced as compared to the other in town teams. It is the responsibility of the In Town Coordinator working along with coaches and others to use appropriate means to accomplish this.
For Travel (BAYS) Program teams: The rosters of travel teams are selected at meetings held by each Age Group Coordinator and his/her respective coaches. The aim is to have as many involved as practicable, and to have someone at the meeting with personal knowledge about each player under consideration. Players are placed based on their skill level and commitment. Evaluations by coaches and open evaluation results are important data in assisting in this process. Recognition is given to the fact that player's abilities and interest can very well change in relatively short periods of time and placements should try to reflect those changes as best as possible.
How are evaluations and assignments conducted?
Parents and players should understand that:
- Each coach is asked by the Age Coordinator each season to complete an objective evaluation form for each player on the team.
- The two major sources of information used by coaches and age coordinators to help make team assignments are the coach's evaluations and the spring tryouts. Of these considerably more emphasis is given to the evaluations as they reflect a season long review of each player.
- Team assignments are made with the best interests of players and teams in mind.
- Player assessment will be conducted as fairly as possible.
- Every effort will be made to see that teams are not exclusionary over time and that team assignments reflect an evaluation of each player's current skills and commitment.
- A player's individual success and development results in large part from how the player interacts with the team to which he/she is assigned, not on which team.
As a parent, you should be supportive of your child and her/his enthusiasm for the sport of soccer regardless of the team assignment. We encourage you to discuss any concerns about team placement with the appropriate coach for your child.
Is it possible my child will not be assigned to a team?
Yes. While the SYSA would like to place everyone who wants to play, there are occasions when this isn't possible. Sometimes we do not have enough volunteer coaches, or there are not enough children to form a complete team.
The SYSA Administrator will notify parents when there is a problem in assigning your child to a team.
Registration preference is given to those whose registration applications are submitted by the published deadline date. Late registrations will be considered on a space availability basis.
What are a coach's responsibilities?
Coaches should develop skilled players, promote fun, good sportsmanship and good soccer. Winning is secondary.
Coaches should promote good sportsmanship and must set an example for the players. Coaches should show respect for referees and opponents. Coaches should never publicly question a referee's call of chastise or belittle a referee.
Coaches are ultimately responsible for parental conduct during games. Coaches should inform parents of the need for appropriate and respectful behavior on the sidelines, and should directly with any parent who fails to act accordingly. Contact a member of the SYSA board of directors if you feel uncomfortable dealing with a parent directly.
All coaches should attend license certification courses. Coaches are strongly encouraged to have an E license. Preference for the selection of coaches, all other things being equal, will take into consideration coaching licensing.
At the younger ages coaches should expose all players to the various offensive and defensive positions. Position assignments should be rotated, giving players equal time at different positions. As players get older, more experienced, show preference for specific positions and develop particular skills, coaches should balance these considerations with the goal of enhancing an overall team effort. None-the-less, through all ages, coaches are encouraged, wherever possible to expose all players to as much diversity of the game as appropriate.
Coaches should always remember that we are dealing with children and that the game is for the kids!
What is the Age Group Coordinator's responsibility?
Age Group Coordinators are responsible for determining the number of teams, recommended team placement within the BAYS division system and the members of a team. An Age Group Coordinator operates in a given age BAYS group for a given sex, for example, BAYS U12 Girls. Age Group Coordinators are responsible for final team and player placement decisions.
What are the BAYS evaluation and placement guidelines?
Last Updated: Sunday, May 18, 2008
Evaluations for BAYS teams will be held every spring, prior to the fall season. Evaluations are but one component of the evaluation process. Important emphasis is given to coaches' evaluations of players as evidenced by a season of games and practices. There will be two nights of evaluations scheduled per age group. Players should attend both tryout nights for their age group. On the first night of the tryouts, groupings of players will be a mix of abilities. Results from the first night of tryouts will determine groupings for the second night of tryouts. Depending on numbers of registrations, and other factors, the second night of evaluations for certain age groups may not be required. However, all players should plan to be available for both nights. SYSA will utilize MLS coaches and independent evaluators to assess the players. Evaluators will be secured by the Age Group Coordinators and Boys and Girls' Directors. The format for the tryouts will be established by the SYSA Director of Coaching. The Age Group Coordinator will compile the results of the evaluations, along with the coaches' evaluations and MLS input. This information will be put together in chart form and will be used to determine team make-up. Teams are outlined in draft form by Age Group Coordinator. The Age Group Coordinator will hold a coach's placement meeting to discuss draft team placements, evaluations and tryout results. All active coaches and active assistant coaches invited to attend. Final teams will be discussed and established. Coaches and Assistant Coaches are identified for teams following the placement process. Coaches are selected after review of "coach's evaluation," independent feedback, and a regard for MYSA license training, history of involvement and willingness and capability of coaches to represent SYSA with enthusiasm. SYSA recommends one Head Coach and one Assistant Coach. SYSA encourages involving new coaches in the programs as available. In the case where there are multiple candidates for a head coach on a team, SYSA supports the movement of coaches each fall (i.e. alternating head coach, etc.). After the coaching placement meeting for each age group, the Age Group Coordinator will submit the final proposed rosters to the respective Boys or Girls Director for final review. After review by the Boys or Girls Director, team rosters can be sent to the coaches. The coaches can then notify players of their team placement. SYSA supports the concept of player movement between teams following the Spring season. Movement should be made after the Fall season only where necessary to accommodate a change in numbers of teams. Promoting the strongest players up to the higher teams provides these players with a more competitive environment and the opportunity to play and compete with stronger players. SYSA history shows that player movement is likely to occur at every level. Team assignments are made with the best interests of players and teams in mind. Players registered for the Spring who did not play on a Sudbury Soccer team in the Fall should be first slotted toward open slots among the existing teams, assuming the placement is credible and appropriate. For example, a mid division one team player could be placed on the two team, but probably not the three team. If such an option is not available, Coordinators will use all available input (from coaches and any previous tryouts/playing experience) to make the placement. Players who do not attend evaluations should not expect to be placed on a top team. Player movement should involve several players from team to team. Movement down of one player only is generally inappropriate and unkind. Grievance Procedures: Complaints about evaluation and tryout procedures are to be discussed 1) with the Age Group Coordinator and 2) with the appropriate Board-VP Coordinator. Grievances should focus on evaluation process and logistics rather than individual player placements. The guidelines are suggested only from history and recognition of prior "best practices". SYSA recognizes that all evaluation processes and tryout formats must be tailored to the age group and number of players. SYSA requests that age group coordinators contact SYSA to discuss process that do not follow the intent and philosophy adopted within these suggestions and guidelines for approval of a significantly modified process.
U6, U7, and U8 player placement procedures?
The Age Group Coordinators are responsible for the formation of the teams in their age group.
U6 – players are picked at random (the exception being twins requesting to be together)
All U7 and U8 players will be given a rating at the end of their prior spring season. Coaches will rate players either “A” (top), “B” (middle) or “C” for distribution. It is likely that most players will be “B.” There may be only one, two or possibly no “A” or “C” players per team. It is recognized that rating children at this age is difficult, but the goal is to avoid having an excess of players who can dominate and score at will or players who won’t cooperate or participate on one team. ONLY coaches and Age Group Coordinators will have knowledge of the “ratings”.
U7 and U8 players are then separated into following groups:
1) Coach and assistant coach’s children
2) Children of other parents wishing to be an assistant coach
4) “A” players
5) “B” players
6) “C” players
7) New players
Players are to be distributed randomly from each of the above mentioned groups to form a new team each fall. Generally, teams will remain intact from fall to spring and all new spring players will be distributed evenly.
This policy is designed to achieve the following goals and objectives:
- Balanced Teams – while many players have played on a balanced team, many more have not. While we try our best to avoid any emphasis on winning or losing, teams that constantly struggle to get a goal or two are not having the same experience as the others.
- Exposure to a Variety of Coaches – in general, the coaching staff is strong in our intramural program. We feel that players will benefit from working with different coaches who may have different strengths and skills. By utilizing MLS staff, sponsoring MYSA licensing courses, distributing coaching handbooks and reviewing coach’s evaluations, we hope to maintain this high quality group of coaches.
- Improved Incorporation of “New Players” – history shows that teams of new players are usually at a disadvantage given the great progress players make from season to season at these age levels. It is also hard to add one or two new players to a team that has been together for many seasons without making a difficult situation for the new children.
- A Town-Wide Social Experience – We favor a cooperative town wide approach. Children will meet peers from other elementary schools and the feeling of school groups playing against each other will be avoided. By avoiding grouping children into tight neighborhood/school groups from the start, at the U6 level, we feel the disruption of mixing teams the following year will be minimized. There is clearly a large social component to playing soccer and if parents can convey to their children this great opportunity for making new friends while learning the game and having fun, it is a win-win situation for everyone.
We firmly believe that by following these procedures all teams will be formed in a consistent and fair manner and that all players will have a greater opportunity for growth and development.
How much will my child play?
SYSA's primary focus is on player development. It is the policy of SYSA that coaches distribute game playing time equally among all players on a team, for both Intramurals and BAYS programs.
It is understood that roster size and opportunity for substitution may not allow for equal distribution at every game. However, over the course of the season, all players should be allotted equal game playing time, with the goal of each player playing at least 50%.
Policy on playing up or playing down an age group
Players in kindergarten, first and second grades and U9/U10 intramural players will be placed according to grade regardless of date of birth.
Players on BAYS travel teams will be placed according to date of birth except as follows:
- Players may play up to play with his/her classmates.
- SYSA may request a waiver from BAYS for a player to play down with his/her classmates. This is an automatic waiver, however the player may not be placed on a team any higher than division 3. From the BAYS Bylaws, section 5: "A. an age exception may be granted under bylaw 3 (ADA waivers); B. the Competition Committee may grant an age waiver (at the request of a town only) to a child who is grade-appropriate for the age group but is otherwise too old for the age group, so long as: 1. The team that the child is playing on will play only in BAYS Division 3 or lower; and 2. The age group that the child is playing in is U-14 or below."
Field Closure Policy
The decision to close the fields is made by members of the SYSA Executive Board and the Park and Recreation Director. Every effort will be made to announce field closures by 7:15 a.m. for Saturday morning games and 10:45 a.m. for afternoon games. Cancellation of Sunday games will be made by 10:30 a.m. and weekday games by 2:30 p.m. Field closures will be posted on the Sudbury Soccer website. Parents can also sign up for RainedOut.
When fields remain open:
- BAYS games must be played as scheduled. The only person able to cancel a scheduled game is the referee.
- U9/U10 In Town and U8 games should be played as scheduled. Referees are instructed to go to assigned fields unless the fields are closed.
U6 and U7 teams may play at the coordinators’ discretion.
Policy on holiday weekend tournaments
If your team participates in a holiday weekend tournament your regularly scheduled game must be pre-played.
The Referee Coordinator and Field Scheduler should be notified as far in advance as possible.
Note: The Referee Coordinator spends many hours assigning referees to games, therefore last minute cancellations are extremely frustrating and inconsiderate.
Policy on religious holidays
Sudbury Soccer follows BAYS policy on religious holidays. Here are the BAYS guidelines:
"From time to time, the BAYS spring or fall game schedule is in conflict with the observance of a religious holiday. Longstanding BAYS policy is to allow any coach the option of postponing a game where such a religious conflict may exist.
All BAYS coaches, and BAYS member towns, are expected to cooperate in assuring that children and their families are able to choose freely, and without pressure, between religious observances and participation in BAYS activities.
It is expected that a child who chooses to observe a religious holiday in lieu of playing soccer will not jeopardize his or her playing time or position on the team in future games as a result of such choice.
In requesting a postponement, the opposing coach and the Division Director must be notified as soon as possible before the scheduled game date. Referee schedulers and town field schedulers should also be notified where necessary and appropriate.
The process and time frames for rescheduling and playing the postponed game are as set out in BAYS By-Law 9 [Playing the Schedule], Section 6. The BAYS By-Laws are available in the current rulebook or on the BAYS website at: www.bays.org.
Any questions regarding this policy should be directed to: email@example.com."
Religious holidays are known well in advance therefore Sudbury's Referee Coordinator and Field Scheduler should be notified as early as possible.