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⚽️ H O M E ⚽️ O F ⚽️ T H E ⚽️ #1 H U R R I C A N E S : ⚽️ YOUR SOCCER HQ ⚽️ Arrive for warm-ups 45 minutes before match kickoffs⚽️ Practices are now at 6:00, but will move to 5:45 as we lose light in October⚽️ Begin hydrating the day before each match⚽️ You're a champion, so eat a champion's breakfast, and a good packed lunch beats a school lunch⚽️ Start everything smart; finish everything strong⚽️ Give a good ball, defend savagely, talk about everything⚽️ Work supporting angles on attack and defense⚽️ Fall down? Get up fast. Really hurt? Help is on the way⚽️ Know your teammates. Connect. Never strand a friend⚽️ Practice how you play in uniform. Do the uniform proud⚽️ Prepare for excellence in every way, on and off the field⚽️ Thank your supporters and go for the top⚽️ Thank your competition. They sharpen you⚽️ Build your teammates at every chance. They build you⚽️ Watch higher level performances. They inspire you ⚽️ Take what you learn here into your family and school. Win ⚽️
Oct 14, 2018 - Ocala Hurricanes Kickers Stay Perfect With 7-1 Win
⚽️ CANES 7 RED 1
On Saturday, October 13th, Ocala's Big Sun Soccer Complex rolled into some more pleasant fall weather, with a crisp and sunny morning. By the time the sun was higher for the U15 midseason 11:00 kickoff between the 4-0 Ocala Hurricanes and the 2-2 Reds, both squads were ready for a good run. "It wasn't so humid or up in the 90s like our first four matches," said Canes Coach Fred Miley. "We train to be a strong second half squad, so I think we had a little more in our tank this time for how we like to finish."
In the 12th minute, Ryan Gorman fought for a loose ball to knock home the first Hurricanes score. That brought an important early edge into the first water break, staging more hard work and good communication shortly after the break with an assist from Lainey Liles to fellow striker Tessa Ward. "Our girls worked out that goal with good communication and hustle," said their coach. About ten minutes later, Red brought a breakaway up their right flank led by their big striker Drake, who nailed what would be the only Reds tally from about ten yards out. Ryan Gorman was apparently irked by this and less than two minutes later answered with another unassisted goal of his own, off another loose ball -- his fifth goal on the season. "Ryan knows how to harness his emotions for the good of the team," said his coach. "He has the respect of his teammates and can quite deliberately bring a great spark for our fighting spirit at any time. He was involved with three goals today, and had a few words for the squad at halftime."
The Hurricanes took that 3-1 lead into halftime, but blew the game out in the second half. Tessa Ward knocked in the fourth Canes goal (her eighth on the season) in short order, off an assist from Ryan, bringing the widening edge to 4-1 at the second water break, to start the fourth quarter. That's when striker Tre Ward recognized some fatigue in the Red defense and attacked those seams with three consecutive unassisted goals. "Tre was just sealing our deal with those three late runs. We had to take him out before he tore a hole in the net," said Miley.
The Hurricanes meet their midseason mark at 5-0, outscoring all five of their opponents, 26-7. "We're off to a strong start, but we know we are remembered for how we finish, not for how we start. The rest of the season will consist of five rematches for all six squads. This is a classy, hard working team. We prize our sportsmanship first. Our players expect excellence from themselves and each other. They will show up with their best teamwork each Saturday," their coach said. "We measure ourselves against ourselves from the week before."
For Game 6, the #1 Hurricanes (5-0 this season, and 22-0-1 across their first three seasons) face the #2 Smokies (Gray squad, 3-2) on Field 3, Saturday, October 20th. That's the early match this time, at 9:30. Players should arrive at 8:45 for warm-ups.
⚽️ MATCH #5 STATISTICS, 10/13/2018
FOULS CK SAVES SOG GOALS
CANES 4 8 3 15 7
RED 4 1 8 4 1
1st half: Ryan
~ water break (1-0) ~
HALFTIME: CANES 3 RED 1
2nd half: Tessa/Ryan
~ water break (4-1)
FINAL: CANES 7 RED 1
BOX SCORE 1ST HALF 2ND HALF FINAL
CANES 3 4 7
REDS 1 0 1
Oct 9, 2018 - Hurricane Michael
Possible practice cancellations will be announced on our team app or on our team text threads. We are expecting heavy rains and high winds across the peninsula this week. Feel free to text or call Coach Miley if you are uncertain of word on our Tuesday or Thursday practices.
Oct 7, 2018 - Hurricanes Push Mojo Past Aqua, 5-2
⚽️ HURRICANES 5 AQUA 2
On Saturday, October 6th, the Ocala Hurricanes added to their perfect start, with a 5-2 win over the tough Aqua squad, out-shooting them, 13-3, for the convincing win. Widening an early two-game lead over the field of contenders, the 4-0 Hurricanes (21-0-1 across three seasons) rode a hat trick from Tessa Ward, who broke through the resistance just a few minutes into the match, off an assist from her brother Tre.
"I saw Tessa in the try-outs," said her coach, Fred Miley, "and I did not want to coach against her. I wanted to coach for her. She has a lot of go-getter-grit, and an instant full heart in her decisions. That's an advantageous quality in this sport. She's dynamite in a laser beam with soccer decisions. Doesn't even need a mental process to jam for a soccer ball. Some players in a youth league enjoy soccer, some love soccer, and some are just here to learn a new sport. And then there's the occasional kid who also is hard-wired for what soccer demands. That's our #9. Our team is hitting a passionate fighting stride now, and our girl Tess likes to be at the point of the spear. So that's where we put her."
The Hurricanes took that 1-0 edge into the first water break, but Aqua was there to fight also, and answered with their first shot from running behind the last Canes defender (offsides position) to receive a long pass, setting up an easy surprise one on one for a score before halftime. "We thought the call was missed," said Miley, "but we easily shrugged it off because we know we miss coaching calls, too, and sometimes uncertain officiating calls or non-calls go our way, too. We really like that officiating crew and we know we're lucky to have that head referee at our level." The Hurricanes knew they had to reach down as a team for their own mojo, and the second half would become just that kind of story once again.
After the first water break, the second quarter began tilting toward anyone's match, with skirmishes going both ways. "We found ourselves playing more defense than usual after the first break," said Miley. "That got our attention."
Ryan Gorman certainly noticed the shift from Hurricanes dominance to a stalemate, and shared a challenge with the squad at halftime. "Hey, this is for all of us. We all have to scrap for the loose balls if we want to take this game back. That's how we're gonna take this." Ryan's teammates apparently took his challenge to heart, because the next four goals for the Hurricanes would not only lock the game out of range, but by no coincidence, all four were unassisted, directly from stolen or loose balls. The Hurricanes took a "skirmish and shoot" approach and made it pay. First, Tessa got things going off a steal for the go ahead goal. Then Ryan's twin brother Jack struck from the back line off a loose ball, landing his first tally of the year and what would turn out to be the winner. Then Tessa scooped up another loose ball and added the squad's fourth goal with a quick strike from distance for her first hat trick. Her brother Tre followed the new team pattern with another strike off a loose ball, for a 5-1 firm handle on the match. Aqua scored late with a high bomber from distance, and the Hurricanes answered that with more gale force winds around the Aqua net, banging out five more shots and winning two more corner kicks in the final ten minutes before the contest was settled, 5-2.
"They played us tough," said Coach Corey Liles, "but our kids stepped it up when they had to."
The first place Hurricanes next face Coach Peterson's Red squad at 11:00, Saturday the 13th, on Field 4, where both squads practice. "We scrimmaged them last week with a 2-0 win across 30 minutes," said Canes head coach Miley. "So we kind of know each other from that and from sharing the practice field. Coach Peterson knows what he's doing, and we appreciate his sportsmanship and diligence with his players. We know they have a strong attack when things are clicking for them. We aim to disrupt that and bring our game to them. Ten of our players have been involved with our scoring in the first four matches. We generally get better as the game goes on. Our kids have worked hard to be a strong second half team with their conditioning and their learning on the fly. They understand the importance of keeping a level head under challenge. We are a feisty bunch, so the feistier the better. The competition makes everyone better."
⚽️ MATCH #4 STATISTICS, 10/6/2018
FOULS CK SAVES SOG GOALS
CANES 3 5 1 13 5
AQUA 1 1 8 3 2
1st half: Tessa/Tre
~ water break (1-0) ~
Aqua goal, high shot
HALFTIME: CANES 1 AQUA 1
2nd half: Tessa, unassisted, from steal
Jack, unassisted, loose ball
Tessa, unassisted, loose ball
~ water break (4-1) ~
Tre, unassisted, loose ball
Aqua goal, high shot
FINAL: CANES 5 AQUA 2
BSYSL U15 BOX SCORE, 10/6/2018
WEEK 4 1ST HALF 2ND HALF FINAL
CANES 1 4 5
AQUA 1 1 2
Oct 5, 2018 - Hurricanes Blow by Burgundy
⚽️ HURRICANES 6 BURGUNDY 1
On Saturday, September 29th, through the noonday nineties in North Central Florida, the Navy Blue Ocala Hurricanes hammered out a 6-1 win versus the Burgundy squad, to continue their perfect start at 3-0. That also extended their undefeated streak to 20-0-1 across the last three seasons.
Defensive captain and sweeper Josh Sieradzki, who has been an integral part of all 21 matches, affirmed, "We're working together well. Each week is better. We just need to keep talking out there." Indeed, the Hurricanes do work relentlessly with competitive drills each practice, and expect to finish practices with wind sprints to be ready for the persisting heat wave next Saturday versus Aqua. "We are tougher fighters with each match," said Canes Coach Fred Miley after the win. "We have locked onto a few key drills that push our competitive edge for endurance and contact plays. We have some snarly habits now when it comes to winning loose balls. Nobody is scared of contact, nobody waits for the ball, and nobody fades in the second half. Even our newcomers Chase and Emily have stepped up very competitively. There is nobody just learning to kick a ball anymore. Our kids are connecting already as an exciting squad to watch. They are already at a premier U15 level. Josh wasn't kidding. We build from the back line each season, and he knows. We are a team now."
Hurricanes speaking captain Ryan Gorman won the toss and elected to defend the south goal first, with a slight breeze at the Canes' backs. Two of the Canes girls opened scoring in the eighth minute as striker Lainey Liles took a smooth assist from left midfielder Mia Liebegott, after a give and go from Lainey originally, who ran back to midfield after that razzle dazzle with a big smile for her friends. "We have some very smart and tough girls on our squad," said their coach. "They don't back down for anyone, and they have a lot of fun. All six of our girls are not big and not older players, but our girls are bold, smart, creative and skilled. In a lot of ways, Angie is the heart of the team, and has a great manner of expecting the most of herself in the very grueling outside midfield position, with a smile for everyone. Tessa stands out as probably the scrappiest striker in the league -- she is a fighter down to the bone, stays connected with her passing, and knows her windows for hard, accurate shots. As a striker, she's also one of the best natural defenders on the team, which helps us surprise defenders who keep the ball too long, because she can strip it from some of these bigger boys who underestimate her, and very quickly flip the script. GiGi is our smallest player and will take on the world with her fearless hustle and smarts around the ball as a striker. She has a rugged work ethic, and we see her creating many chances late in a match when others can't keep up. Our newcomer Emily is locking down the right side with plenty of reps now, and she's as good as any defender, with a learning curve as eager as you want. She is reading a soccer book to become more informed in her first season. Mia brings a load of experience and skill, with vision and composure. Nothing rattles her. She is a stellar student and thrives on challenge, with some of her best plays happening under pressure. Our nine boys are there like their brothers. It's a solid team and we have a lot of fun. There's definitely a lot of laughter even as we work hard in practices. And you can hear their humor in the matches."
In short order after the Liles/Liebegott goal, striker Ryan Gorman took a lead pass from Nate "Q" Quiroz, and nailed his first tally of the season. Both boys went up on the boards together with that play, and it was only a warm-up for more things to come from Captain Ryan. The Canes finished the first quarter with a 2-0 lead going into the first water break. "Every water break was important today," said Miley. "We were missing two players, and rotated our two subs in and out of the midfield and striking line frequently. Only a few defenders never came out."
In the thirtieth minute Ryan took another assist from Mia for his next goal, and the Hurricanes gulped down water and Gatorade at halftime with a solid 3-0 start. "At that point we felt good about what we were doing out there," said Miley. The opening of the second half found the Hurricanes sharking around the Burgundy net with even more confidence. Just a few minutes in, Mia threw the ball in from the left touchline to a bolting friend of hers, Tessa Ward, who made quick work of goal #4, her personal third on the season. Mia's third assist in a match is an all-time squad record. Burgundy decided enough was enough and put together a strong counterattack off a back line steal, catching a couple of Hurricanes defenders out of position for the transition. "We don't have our first shutout yet," said Miley, whose squad has outscored opponents 14-4 in the first three matches, "but we are learning from the goals we give up. That was a positioning issue on a fast counterattack that generally requires a bit more experience than our wing backs have at this point, but they both are fast learners, and the lesson won't be lost on them."
Coach Corey noticed that the Burgundy squad was keying on Tre Ward, who led the Canes in goals the first two matches. "Coach Corey picked up on this when we subbed Tre out. That approach of theirs was no accident," said Miley with a smile. "They had some intelligence on our operations," he added with a bigger smile. "But that's what we like. You think you can lock us out because you key on one player, and we will hit you with our whole team. We don't lean on one player or another, and we are very tough on teams who do. That's our public philosophy: be a team. All of our kids come out fighting, and anyone on our squad can step up and score. We see that in practice all the time." Before the second water break, Lainey knocked in her second goal of the day and third on the season, by pouncing on a shot rebounded off the Burgundy goalkeeper. "Lainey's really picking up some timing and positioning on that top line lately," said Miley. "She is seeing the development of each play and wisely learning the art of being in motion off the ball for her chances on net."
At the water break, Coach Corey asked Ryan and Lainey his daughter who would get a hat trick? It turned out to be Ryan, with help from Angie Loforte's first assist. All three of his first goals on the season came tumbling into the squad's first hat trick. "Ryan is one of only three players who has done that for us over the last three seasons," Miley noted. We were glad to see Q and Angie get up on the boards, as well as Mia contributing her own hat trick of assists. We had some great fighters today. Logan Richie fought very hard for loose balls and presented strong attacking challenges around their net. His older brother Chase Richie did well on the one save he needed on his first day as goalkeeper, stepping up for Josh Gangelhoff who could not be here. All in all, a strong outing on a very hot day."
The 3-0 Hurricanes face Coach Hart's 2-1 Aqua squad next Saturday, October 6th, on Field 3, at Ocala's Big Sun Soccer Complex. "We will set up our players as fighters for this one," said their coach. "We know Coach Hart leads his squad with an intense style, and his kids don't quit. Our focus is on competing against ourselves each week. We aim to be better than we were the week before. We expect a fight from Aqua, but we aim to take our fight to them and wear them down in the heat. We calmly believe we can do that. Nobody outworks these kids, and we are starting to own the confidence that comes with the work."
MATCH 3 FOULS CK SAVES SOG GOALS
CANES 2 5 1 12 6
BURGUNDY 0 1 6 1 1
~ water break 2-0 ~
Halftime: Canes 3 Burgundy 0
Tessa/Mia, throwing assist
from left touch line
Burgundy goal, counterattack
~ water break 5-1 ~
Final: Canes 6 Burgundy 1
Sep 27, 2018 - Team Pep Rally Video
Tap the link for our team pep rally video.
GO BSYSL! GO CANES!
Sep 23, 2018 - Ocala Hurricanes Move Into First Place
CANES 5 GRAY 1
⚽️ North Central Florida's Big Sun Youth Soccer League's U15 Division kicked off its second Saturday of the Fall 2018 season with 25 goals scored in three matches. The Ocala Hurricanes had to work very hard for their five. With the club's 19th win in their third season, the Hurricanes maintained their undefeated trail. They did this hosting a well contested 5-1 win in a first match with Coach Demeola's Gray squad, to move into first place. The Hurricanes have worked hard to rebuild their chemistry around only four returning players, and their strong beginning hasn't missed a stride. The squad continues its reputation as a hard working passing team with a commitment to excellence. "This is a good league for friendly competition," said Hurricanes Head Coach Fred Miley after the match. "We have some great families backing these kids on all sides. They hear a lot of cheers, and you can hear coaches cheering for players on both sides as the relationships continue with the families from other seasons. And everyone is putting in the work to improve each week. We aim to be our own best competition. Soccer leads young athletes into a level work ethic through their ups and downs, and a steady mentality as a team. We keep the soccer in soccer as we expect the best of ourselves learning the sport. Otherwise, we're just kicking a ball. Everybody truly wants to play well, and our two newcomers to the sport are looking comfortable in competitive practices with more experienced players. That's what we're after. We want our kids feeling confident about what they can do together as a team. They all are ready for the matches in a positive learning environment. Teams that focus on building character together often achieve winning results. The scoreboard is not the only measure of winning results. We had an excellent week of practice before today's match. We like our progress."
Hurricanes speaking captain and stopper back Jack Gorman reported the Gray squad won the toss and the Hurricanes would take the opening kickoff north. The first eight minutes went bouncing mostly around the midfield with skirmishes as the two squads grappled for whose brand of ball would set the pace. The Hurricanes eventually reined in the kick and run style of their opponents and started working their shorter passing to take the balance of possession time for most of the attacks. The windows for shots started opening for the hard working Navy Blue Canes, and the crowd could hear mostly Hurricanes doing the talking as they threaded their setups together. In the tenth minute, midfielder Tre Ward snatched a loose ball and knocked in the first tally from just outside the box. A few short minutes later, Tre stole a ball from a Gray midfielder and buried another goal from distance. The Hurricanes enjoyed their first water break in the 18th minute with a 2-0 lead, but the Gray squad set up a throw down the right touch line that found #10 sneaking past two defenders for a quick goal on their only shot of the entire match. "I think that was a first for me as a coach, seeing one goal on only one shot for a whole match," said Coach Miley, "but it was a very well played goal that was well deserved by both the thrower and #10."
The Canes bounced back before halftime with a hard shot from the left flank by Mia Liebegott, which bounced off the keeper's knee for Tessa Ward to finish. "All of our kids know to follow our shots," said Miley. "All of our drills are competitive, encouraging soccer decisions under pressure. We are a team geared for battle. Even the newcomers are onto this after just a few weeks. Tess was just repeating a competitive drill from practice. She is a very fast learner and one of the most aggressive strikers in our league. She was just being herself today, and that landed her two goals."
The second half belonged to the Hurricanes, as Tessa (Tess for short) knocked in another one off her brother Tre's assist. The Canes finished with possibly the best highlight reel, as Lainey Liles headed in a high assist from striker Jackson Walker relaying Tre's corner kick across the goal mouth to the far post. Liles was happy to finish that play just seconds before the final whistle. "That's just one of those plays the Liles family will always remember," said Miley, "because their girl played it perfectly, and it could never be done again exactly like that. A once in a lifetime play. And I'll always remember her daddy's smile after that play. Because he was no longer my assistant coach at that moment. He was all daddy."
The Canes out-shot the Gray squad, 14-1, for the 5-1 result. "The match was closer than the score," said Miley. "The Gray squad played with a lot of heart, and Quadarius Mitchell anchored their defense with a lot of well timed tackles. They played us tough and with great sportsmanship. We needed some stellar goals to stay ahead. Their goalkeeper was smart about cutting down angles and saved nine of our shots -- that's not easy. He also played well on their right wing when he switched out to the field."
"These matches are becoming a real family affair," said Miley. "I met Mia's grandfather after the match, and we all noticed how packed the opposite touch line was with a lot of people cheering for the kids with both sides. We love to see that kind of support for both teams. We have three sets of siblings on the squad. We like it when they get to connect in the matches. It means a lot to the families, so we try to put them in positions where they can connect. We think soccer is about the families, not just the players. That's why we run our gratitude lap at the end of every match to thank them. The kids on both sides can feel the support."
Following are some of the latest stats and scores as the Hurricanes jump out to an early sole possession of first place.
MATCH #2 STATISTICS, 9/22/2018
FOULS CK SAVES SOG GOALS
CANES 1 7 0 14 5
GRAY 0 2 9 1 1
1st half: Tre Ward (unassisted)
Tre Ward (unassisted, from distance)
#10 Gray (from throw, right flank)
~ water break ~
Tessa Ward (Tre Ward, assist)
2nd half: Tessa Ward (Mia Liebegott, assist)
~ water break ~
Lainey Liles (header, from Jackson
Walker's assist, off Tre's corner kick)
Sep 17, 2018 - Hurricanes Hang Onto Tough Opener
CANES 3 BLUE 2
On a sweltering, humid mid-September Saturday, the Ocala Hurricanes kicked off their fall season versus Coach Moreno's Royal Blue squad with a completely new look, leaning on three of four returnees and eleven newcomers to bring the new chemistry for a third consecutive championship run. The temperature was over 90 degrees by the second half, and the humidity pushed the heat index up around 100. The Hurricanes, with sweeper Josh Sieradzki captaining the defense in front of goalkeeper Josh Gangelhoff, withstood about fifteen minutes of an early rush from Moreno's Blue Crew. "Our diamond defense worked well to stave off their early surge," said Hurricanes head coach Fred Miley.
Catalyzed by some aggressive play from Jack and Ryan Gorman and Tessa Ward, the Hurricanes wrestled to turn the tide, as those three initiated attacking triangles with Tre Ward, Mia Liebegott, Laney Liles, and Angie Loforte. By the 18th minute, Tre found enough daylight just outside the box for a hard shot rattling the crossbar, announcing the Hurricanes were there for a fight. "Tre's first shot was like a warning shot that got us all feeling we were in fact in this thing toe to toe," said Miley. "We were up against some older players, and were without our only 15-year-old, and Tre stepped up as a clear leader. This was just a matter of believing in ourselves and each other, and the choices to fight started to spread for us."
Shortly after that bit of drama, 12-year-old Logan Richie raced off the bench to make a difference among the mostly taller players. Logan wasted no time scooping up a loose ball and laying out a perfect assist to Mia running full stride for a casual strike into the net. "Just like our hot box drill," Coach Miley remarked. "They worked together like it was nothing. Logan's initiative made that happen, and Mia kept a cool head as usual for the finish. A very businesslike first goal for us."
On the ensuing kickoff, Tre showed up as a thief, ripping the ball for himself, beating two defenders, and plugging another one into the net. "Bang Bang. Like John Wayne just showed up," said Miley. "Until those two shots by Mia and Tre, they were outshooting us."
The Hurricanes were not only missing Nate "Q" Quiroz, their oldest and strongest returning player, and a field leader, but also Assistant Coach Corey Liles. Aaron Sieradzki stepped in for Coach Corey. "Coach Corey is always a huge difference maker for us, so we missed both him and Q today in a big way, but our kids didn't let that distract them. They believe in each other and we believe in them as a team. They just had to find out what that feels like and looks like under fire."
The Hurricanes took their 2-0 lead into their halftime talk. By then, the heat was making its mark on all of the kids on both sides, and substitutions were necessary at all the right times and positions. "The strength and confidence of our team was clear at halftime," said Miley.
"Our team has six girls, the most of any team in the league, and I'm proud of that. Right around 13, 14, or 15 is when boys usually catch up to or pass the girls with their size. That's our U15 level, and we have mostly younger girls. Still, all six of our girls took on some of their bigger boys straight on, just like they do in practice. Our girls hold their own with no fear. GiGi Leon went up against boys almost twice her size and made them pay for underestimating her quickness and smarts around the ball. Our pressure drills had our kids ready not only for contact, but for the endurance they would need to hang onto the second half. Boy or girl, our team was best conditioned for that heat, and mentally ready for battle."
Moreno's Crew was obviously tweaked and prodded during their halftime talk, because they came out banging away again, using their athleticism and early energy well to win some balls and orchestrate attacks. Their first two attacks of the new half were turned away by Sieradzki and company, as the Hurricanes made some counter-attacks down the touch line. At the 51st minute, Moreno's strikers set up a crossing run with a misdirection shot to finally punch through the Hurricanes diamond. Gangelhoff never had a chance, the shot was so well placed. Much as Tre had done in the first half, the Blue squad siezed the Canes kickoff and flipped the script with a fast second goal of their own. Coach Miley soothed his fighters with the reminder: "Hey, it's zero-zero again. You know what to do. Fight!"
And that is what the Hurricanes did. Loose balls suddenly seemed to have a Hurricanes signature on them through the final fifteen minutes of the match, as the best conditioned team took control. "We were able to settle the contest into better possession time for us, which eventually tipped the match toward our opportunities. We expected our conditioning and our passing would prevail. Our kids knew they had worked for that late edge and they took it," said Miley.
The Hurricanes generated three late surges on the Blue net as they grabbed control of the match. Emily Metzler held out several tries on her right defensive side, and a couple of times sent the ball up to Jackson Walker, rotating in for Loforte who had battled the heat and opponent most of the match at right midfield. Jackson's fresh legs shook up the match like lightning and put the Blue squad back on its heels. The first response to the tie score was a beautiful shot by midfielder Ryan Gorman from a shallow angle over twenty yards out, finding the back of the net like a heat-seeking missile. The shot was called back because of a late offsides call. "That was more potential adversity for our mindset, because none of us could see how Ryan was offside. I had to ask for a clarification of the call, to pinpoint a player for that call. The head ref was clearly backing the linesman, as he should, because he was not in position like the coaches and linesman on the opposite side were. I believe in only making an inquiry, not an argument. An extremely hot and humid match is more difficult not only to play, but also to officiate with perfect positioning. Our kids know that coaches and officials are as imperfect as they are, but I can tell you our kids faced a real mental challenge with that call, and they overcame it together with more attacks on net. I was proud of their composure. That had nothing to do with anything but them and their own resolve."
The Hurricanes scrapped for a loose ball on their left flank, with Chase Richie coming out on the winning end, and laying the ball ahead to Laney Liles, who tapped it across to Tre Ward running an interior gap, which he exploited past two defenders to knock home the winner, his second tally of the day. The Hurricanes held onto their winning margin the final ten minutes with superior possession time and continuing pressure on the Blue goal. "We really took the match into our own hands down the stretch," said their coach. "We had better defensive support systems in place, and were more level headed and confident with our hard won opportunities. They had seven shots on goal to our six, but we scored on half of our tries."
Supporters on both sides could not tell which way the match would go. In the heavy heat, the contest became a battle of wills and endurance. "That was a strong opponent. They tested us well," said Miley. "Sieradzki and Gangelhoff held down the fort against a tough and persisting attack from some good experienced players, and did not get rattled or hang their heads when many other defenders and goalkeepers at this level might have. They held true to what we believe about ourselves and each other. They held together our team as the backbone of it. We needed teamwork and endurance to overcome several adversities beyond the heat."
THE WORK BEHIND THE MATCHES AND THE COMMITMENT BEHIND THE WORK
Coach Miley is convinced the pre-season training was the real difference-maker. "Half of our six training sessions these last three weeks had to be made up on different days due to lightning and heavy rain cancellations. I don't think the other teams were doing that. We arrived for opening day with all six sessions underpinning our teamwork. In training, our passing and formations under pressure were the emphasis. Our kids worked hard. They were ready to win an endurance test with older and bigger kids, and that's exactly what they did."
The Hurricanes, since their arrival last fall in Ocala's Big Sun Youth Soccer League, remain undefeated after all 20 matches so far. "Team-building requires buy-in from team members," Coach Miley explained. "This was a very competitive match that required our very best. We all have our opinions and approaches with the game, and with young people learning it. Early in a season, I like to be clear about my thinking. My style is not so much about what I expect of others, but more about how we can agree on what we expect of ourselves. People can give lip service to rec league being "non-competitive", but the fact is, both squads, like these two today, are truly attacking and defending opposite goals with all they have. All the coaches at this level do actually employ their best strategies as they give all of their players their best chances at success."
"So I'm not into pretending. ALL the coaches are working hard to help our players learn the game well. Each kid needs to feel their own role in different positions, formations, and scenarios. There are always pressure decisions to make in this sport. You can't take the soccer out of soccer or dumb it down, no matter how hard you want to try. It's more fun as a team gels with rising skills and better connections, and less fun without that. Sooner or later, kids do figure out how to kick even when they're not coached, and they do figure out which goals they are defending and attacking. Soccer by nature is always competitive, and we can teach kids to reach for excellence or not. My families are on board with a team working for excellence. All the players chose that when given the choice on Day 1. We don't care what level someone else wants to call us or whether we are labeled premier or competitive or rec when we signed up. This is not about labels. Coach Corey and I already feel we have premier kids who love competition, so we're taking this group as far as they want to go and as fast as they want to go, for no extra charge. We really don't care much about these elite sort of labels, and our kids don't feel any ceiling on what they will do this season. We are working with some high quality kids and they already understand excellence. Soccer is what it is, and it always requires work before the playing really gets fun. We'll take any group of kids and take them as far as they want to go. We get that, they get that, and that is how we go at it. Kids will do well together if they are encouraged to operate as a good team does. They will rise higher than we think, if we only show the way and let them play."
"This is a good league because we have a director who encourages excellence of character at all levels, not just excellence of play. That culture of excellence is in place. At the beginning of each season, all the coaches buy into their golden opportunities to take these kids forward in soccer and life. Soccer wouldn't be any fun if we just kicked the ball anywhere. All teams have a goal to reach, the score is kept, and the teams who work together best usually get the most goals. So, we say to our team, soccer is about working together as well as possible. We are helping middle schoolers and young high schoolers experience the world's greatest team sport with uniquely built teams under different coaches who care about the whole kid. All our kids get that, and they love working for that true team experience. Each new season, our six U15 teams are jumbled, with maybe three or four players returning to each squad. That creates a lot of fun for our volunteer coaches to put something special together in a short time."
"One coach asked why I don't coach 'competitive' level. I had to smile. My answer to him was that I believe excellence in a sport should always be a choice at any level. Personally, I'm especially passionate about beginning players having an opportunity to find an early love for the game by tasting many successes in their growth as a new player. I had coaches who did that for me, and now I'm giving back. I cannot speak for other coaches or tell them where or how they should coach, but as for our team, it is our players who are always offered on Day 1 that choice of excellence as a goal, and they want it every time. Each coach handles Day 1 in their own way. We look for buy-in on what the players expect of themselves. They get to own their direction from the beginning, and they always respond to that ownership with plenty of focus and progress."
"Coach Corey and I are very impressed with how far and fast the early development is coming along for our two newcomers to soccer, Emily Metzler and Chase Richie. Seeing new players pull down their skills and confidence this early is an absolutely high reward for us as coaches. We know we are responsible for our team and nobody else's. We take pride in our players and especially how they are growing as young people who are stepping into new expressions and leadership through soccer. We understand the culture we aim to lead, and we are responsible for the sportsmanship and gratitude of our players. Each team has a special mix of families, it's own dreams, and its own character opportunities. We support the best interactions possible for all the BSYSL families, and we say and try to show this early. The kids are always willing to give their best when they can feel a team that is serious about bringing out the best in each other as they find more fun with better skills and better teamwork, in a good league that supports their best efforts.
The culture of each team is up to the coaches to lead. We'll be happy to see other teams get a flag or a website or an app, if they so choose, to keep the enthusiasm and communication open and lively. But the real substance of a season is achieved in practice. Our Hurricanes families always bring a big, happy, positive crowd to responsibly back ALL the kids in any match. Our message is that soccer is for ALL the people, and that is why it is for the families. Every kid matters, whether they can afford Premier League or some kind of elite travel team or not. Coach Corey and I agree it's exciting to coach players new to the sport and see their progress in just a few weeks take them to the level of players with several years on them. That's what we call elite. We are proud of Emily and Chase for this awesome beginning.
"As for Hurricanes Soccer, everyone keeps buying into our simple identity as a hard working passing team committed to excellence. I have never seen a newcomer to the sport who did not want to rise to the level around them. Even a year or two with the game can make a big difference, but there are some drills that promote "soccer decisions" better than others. These are the competitive drills, and they don't usually involve a lot of cones or talking or standing around. There is no ego in good coaching, because every minute is for the kids, and they learn best in action. Coach Corey and I are good for each other's approach. We like to keep them moving."
"Our kids are good thinkers on the fly because that's all we do. We buy in on Day 1, and then go to work to be the best we can be. A steady mentality is very important for young athletes. It's truly amazing how far kids can go together when they learn to believe in themselves and their teammates. That is the simple focus we need to overcome whatever we face. The mentality of an overcomer is always a mark of our Ocala Hurricanes players by late season, but I was very glad to see this sort of shared composure in our opening match, even without two of our leaders."
"Our families can see at practices how these players are putting in the work and believing in each other. These kids deserve all the credit. Soccer is not rocket science, but it requires a lot of work to play it simple. Our parents and players are clear about the messages from their coaches, and we are seeing our kids stepping up as leaders already. I know our games will be a blast again, and our game stories are for the family scrapbooks. The beautiful plays will continue to come together as these kids build their connections and feel all the families behind them. Yes, we are bragging on our kids. That's why we have a team website. This is not just about soccer. It's also about life. Do we try to score more goals than the other team does? Yes. Do we aim for the first place medal? Of course. We teach our kids most of all to be better than they were the week before, as a team. That's because our kids are infinitely important and when we believe in them and notice their efforts in the world's greatest competitive team sport, we set them into motion to be whatever they may be. This is a lot like shooting arrows. Our kids will fly far if our belief in them is the drawn bowstring."
Sep 5, 2018 - Canes Schedule
⚽️ BIG SUN YOUTH SOCCER LEAGUE ⚽️
⚽️ O C A L A H U R R I C A N E S (5-0) ⚽️
(22-0-1 across three seasons)
COACHES: FRED MILEY & COREY LILES
BSYSL U15 SCHEDULE ~ FALL 2018
DATE TIME FIELD OPPONENT RESULT
9/15 11:00 3 Blue W 3-2
9/22 11:00 4 Gray W 5-1
9/29 11:00 4 Burgundy W 6-1
10/6 11:00 3 Aqua W 5-2
10/13 11:00 4 Red W 7-1
10/20 9:30 3 Gray
10/27 11:00 4 Burgundy
11/3 9:30 3 Blue
11/10 11:00 3 Aqua
11/17 9:30 3 Red
BSYSL U15 MEDAL POINTS
WEEK 5 Points W-L-T
Canes 15 5-0-0
Gray 9 3-2-0
Blue 6 2-2-1
Aqua 6 2-2-1
Red 6 2-3-0
Burgundy 0 0-4-0
Game officials record scores after each BSYSL match. League officials record standings. League officials award first place medals at the end of each season. As with most youth leagues, participation is honored and achievement is rewarded. The Ocala Hurricanes consider soccer a competitive sport that includes achievement, and therefore we also track scores and standings by jersey colors in order to help our players and families understand our bearings in the league. The league itself tracks scores and standings by team numbers. We use jersey colors instead of team numbers, because colors are easier for players and families to identify.
We know that soccer as the greatest world sport will always be the people's sport. We celebrate the people, not the scoreboard. Our players and families are grateful for the opportunity to participate, which is why, after each match, we thank our opponents and officials and run an enthusiastic gratitude lap for our supporters on only our own half of the pitch -- win, lose, or draw. We know there is a medal only for first place, and no medal for participation. We are serious about that medal and we are serious about the character and fun we find pursuing excellence as a team. We are grateful for the opportunity to a be team this season. We also know that there may be a variety of perceptions of our enthusiasm and gratitude, especially as we thank our supporters after what may be a victory, which is why we now confine our expressions to our own half of the pitch. Because the Hurricanes measure themselves against themselves from the week before, in the three areas of sportsmanship, teamwork, and performance, we therefore also keep scores and standings, just as the league does, to track how we are doing among our peers. We see how measurements in any sport -- such as batting averages and shooting percentages and wins and losses and shutouts and comebacks, help players to understand the kinds of progress and improvements they may be showing in character and teamwork, not just in individual skill sets. Because our squad acknowledges soccer as the greatest competitive world sport, we consider this competition an opportunity to grow in life, which is why we prize sportsmanship, character, and teamwork first.
The way we treat people within this realm of clear competition is of paramount importance. We know that opposite goals are defended and attacked, by opposing squads, and that the sound of ball against net is what players work to achieve. We know that soccer is simply competitive by nature, and players don't just kick the ball anywhere. Soccer is not a recreational activity like walking a dog, which may be fun, but definitely is not competitive. We know that soccer has goals, just as life does. How we go about achieving those goals demands not only hard work, but teamwork. In fact, we believe "teamwork makes the dream work". One of the goals for the Ocala Hurricanes is the first place medal. We believe in reaching for the top with all we have, not because one person is more important than another, but only because the nature of a competitive sport can bring out the best in all of us if we choose to let our best choices prevail. This is why our sportsmanship along the way is our highest goal and prize. We know that it can be expected for the successes of any organization to come under scrutiny, particularly with youth sports. What we teach our children as priorities will always be extremely important. Please address any questions about the Ocala Hurricanes team philosophy directly to Coach Miley. Thank you. ⚽️
Aug 31, 2018 - Welcome to the New Canes
The undefeated Ocala Hurricanes (17-0-1 across their first two seasons) enter a third BSYSL U15 season this fall with four returning players: sweeper Josh Sieradzki, midfielder/goalkeeper Nate "Q" Quiroz, midfielder Angie LoForte, and striker Laney Liles. The league switched to a draft format for team selections, which typically jumbled teams almost unrecognizably, season to season. "This season, coaches could at least hang onto a few familiar players if they weren't snatched too soon by other coaches," said Canes head coach Fred Miley. "This is a great youth league with a lot of excellent and caring coaches. It's always a lot of fun especially to see how fast the newcomers to the sport will pick up skills and start building their confidence. It's a great place for players to learn and grow with soccer as the medium, because the family support is absolutely amazing. We lost a lot of key players from last season as they focused on Blessed Trinity's defending parochial champion squad this fall. During tryouts Coach Corey Liles and I scanned for good team attitudes and coachability as we rebuilt through the draft. I believe what Don Shula said years ago about his perfect '72 team: 'You win with good people.' We were looking for players with families who are well known to be positive and supportive role models (two former coaches) with other kids, not just their own. Our family philosophy and approach is central to all we do, so we rebuilt our fall squad with this priority first. We deliberately selected three sets of siblings to support our family unity."
New players are: Jack and Ryan Gorman, Chase and Logan Richie, Tre and Tessa Ward, Josh Gangelhoff, GiGi Leon, Mia Liebegott, and Emily Metzler. "Both newcomers to the sport of soccer, Emily and Chase, are intelligent and athletic, showing a quick learning curve with the more experienced players swirling around them," said Miley. "We should be ok. Especially with this collective work ethic. More than ok."
The New Canes will retain their dark blue and white uniforms, now generously sponsored by El Toreo Mexican Restaurant, owned by Luis Quiroz. Along with other squads, the Canes were rained out of both scheduled practices this week, but made up what they missed with training sessions on Friday and Saturday. "Every preseason training session is important, as all coaches know," said Miley. "We were coming together with our first two sessions, and the kids were just waiting for enough sunshine to get back at it. I think we are the only squad that made up what we missed this week. Coach Corey and I like our group. They are putting in the work."
First match, due to weather, is now moved forward to September 15th.
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