Welcome to U12

Congratulations on graduating from House League! For the last few years you have been playing soccer solely against other teams within Bays. So, what happens now? Here is a list of frequently asked questions to help you understand what to expect.

Who will I be playing against?

Bays United is part of the Lower Island Soccer Association (LISA). Other clubs in this association are Sooke, Juan de Fuca, Gorge, Lakehill, Prospect Lake, Peninsula, Salt Spring, Saanich and Cowichan. As part of Bays Youth League, all of your games will be against these Clubs (except Cowichan until U13). You may or may not have to travel to Salt Spring to play matches.

What is LISA?

LISA is the umbrella organization for all the clubs mentioned above. It is responsible for setting schedules, monitoring standings, promoting coach education and many other things. For more information visit the LISA website.

How are teams formed?

Youth League (U12-U18) assessments take place in the Spring (typically April/May). There are generally two to three assessments for each age group.

When do I register?

As early as possible please! A note will be sent sometime in March to register for the following season. Please register before assessments. If you wait until late August to register, your child may be put on a wait list.

Are there different divisions?

Yes. At U12 there is a Gold division and a Silver division (also called Blue and White). Boys and girls now play separately (no co-ed division).

How many teams will there be?

The number of teams is determined by the number of players who register. There will be between 10 to 14 players on each team. Generally we have two Gold boys teams and one or two Gold girls teams, four Silver boys teams and two Silver girls teams.

Do the Spring assessments determine what team each player is on?

Yes – as well as an in-season evaluation done by the previous season’s coach. Together they help to form a true picture of player ability and will determine team structures for the upcoming season. Additional input from the upcoming season’s coach(es) may also be required. Goalkeepers are usually assessed separately. Bays’ goal at the U12 level is to have players of like ability playing on the same teams, and to create an environment where players can be challenged, develop their technical skills and have fun.

If my child doesn’t make the Gold team, are there other opportunities to play at this level?

Bays will strive to give players on a Silver team opportunities to play at the Gold level. At U12, players who show commitment, dedication and a positive attitude, in addition to good technical abilities, will be offered the chance to occasionally play with a Gold team. This is called “soft-tiering” and is meant to recognize that player development is ongoing and that children develop at different rates. The decision to soft-tier a player will be at the sole discretion of the coaches involved and the Bays technical staff.

Are there standings?

No. As the U12 division is still considered a developmental age for players, scores are not kept during league play. Standings start being kept at U13.

When are the games?

All games are played Saturday mornings. Most home games are played mid-morning (around 10:30 AM) but this can vary due to field scheduling demands. Away games may start earlier or later. The exact time of the match and the field you will be playing on isn’t known until Wednesday of that week. Your coach will be in contact with the Bays field scheduler for home games and the opposition for away games, and will let the team know accordingly.

Are the games the same?

Generally, yes. There are two 30-minute halves and teams play 8-a-side (as they do at U10/11). New this year – the offside rule is now in effect between the retreat line and the goal. Retreat lines are one third of the way up the pitch.

Who are the coaches?

As in the House League, coaches of U12 teams are volunteers and usually a parent of a player on the team, however, there may be people in the community who would like to coach a U12 team.

Will coaches be supported?

Yes. Every two weeks the entire group of U12’s (boys one week, girls the next) will train together and be coached by Bays technical staff. Coaches are also required to attend the coaching clinics run by Bays throughout the season, and take the free courses offered by LISA (i.e. Soccer for Life). Need more info or interested in coaching? Contact coachcom1@baysunited.ca.

Further questions?

Further questions can be directed to: