Introduction to Competitive Play
The ASA County program places teams in the Anne Arundel County Youth Soccer League (AAYSA). AAYSA hosts teams for players age 7 and older (U8 and up) during spring and fall seasons. All ASA County teams are single gender and placed into divisions based on general ability level. Division 1 is the most competitive level and lower divisions gradually ease in competitive level. County league games are played on Saturdays in the fall and Sunday afternoons in spring. U12 games are generally on Friday evenings.
Teams have home and away games and play at various locations in Anne Arundel County. Practices are usually two days per week and can be anywhere in the general ASA area in West County, especially as teams get older.
ASA considers the county league as an introduction to competitive soccer for younger ages. Play levels can be good and allow for player development under an appropriate pressure level. Unlike the Rec/Development Program, coaches have major control of rosters, and play is generally for players who have some experience. Players may freely register for the County league, and ASA organizes registered players by working with current teams or making new ones. ASA tries to make teams for all players.
The level of commitment rises with all league programs, County included. Players must be prepared to practice according to the teams schedule and should attend all practices, allowing for injury and illness. League teams thrive on consistency. Teamwork is built by interaction with players and coaches. Therefore, ASA expects its league players to be fully able to attend scheduled games and get to practices regularly. Costs are the same as recreational play except that uniforms are purchased and owned by each player until outgrown.
Playtime for players at the County level, per league rules, is generally 50% of games or more based on team size. The only exception is Division 1, where the minimum time is 25% at coaches discretion. This is due to the increased competition level. Playtime can be effected by a players presence at practice.
The County league is both for players continuing with Recreational play, as well as those looking for introductory competition. ASA’s emphasis remains on player development, players having fun, and development of teams in upper county divisions for potential travel play. All skill level players are welcomed. At ages U9 and U10, players who are new to the game of soccer should enroll in the ASA Rec/Development program to gain basic experience.
A complete copy of the AAYSA rules can be found HERE.