100 Mile House & District Soccer Association president Julia Hendry says she is looking forward to a good season this year.
While the numbers are down a little bit from last year, she adds they are pretty close.
There are five teams for the U5s (Timbits); Under six years (U6) has four teams.
The largest division is the U8 group with seven teams, which Hendry says is up significantly from last year.
U10 has four teams this season, and U12, U14 and U18 have three teams each.
She says there is a new rule this year for the younger divisions.
There is a retreat line for the U8s to U12s. During a goal kick, players on the opposing team have to move back a certain distance, depending on the age division.
“It allows the goalie to kick the ball away from the goal line and to another team member before an opposition player can get it.
“When they do a goal kick at that age, the ball gets out about 10 feet and the opposing player kicks it back in the net. It just gives the kids a chance to get it out of their own end.”
She says the rule change came from BC Soccer.
Hendry adds they are not too bad for referees, especially in the lower age brackets, with a number of new recruits this year.
“We’re low in the older age divisions. The next couple of years, the younger referees will be moving up and then we’ll be on track, but we seem to have a little bit of a lull in there right now.”
Hendry adds they just have to be careful when they schedule referees for the older divisions.
“We have to make sure we don’t overlap too much and that we have enough referees on the field.”
There will be one rep team in the Cariboo Youth Soccer League, which sees teams from 100 Mile House, Williams Lake, Quesnel and Prince George playing in the circuit.
100 Mile will be fielding a U14 mixed team because the numbers are down for youth who want to play rep soccer.
Hendry says the local team will play in the U14 boys division, and while she is not absolutely sure, she says this might be the first time it’s happened in the league.
Wee hope the U8s and U10s will come up and start playing rep soccer when they’re older.”