Ellicott City SC becomes first non-CCL member club admitted to CCL II
(Via CCL) – The Club Champions League (CCL) has admitted Ellicott City Soccer Club (ECSC) into CCL II, the league’s new second team pathway launching in fall 2015.
Ellicott City SC, a young organization having just begun operations in Howard County in April 2014, becomes the first non-CCL club to join CCL II for its inaugural season.
ECSC joins 11 CCL clubs – Arlington Soccer Association, Braddock Road Youth Club (BRYC), D.C. Stoddert, FC Frederick, Fredericksburg FC, Lee Mount Vernon SC (LMVSC), Loudoun Soccer, Maryland United FC, McLean Youth Soccer, Potomac Soccer and Southwestern Youth Association (SYA) – to participate in CCL II, which will feature U-11 to U-14 age groups on both the boys and girls sides for the 2015 season.
The league plans to expand its divisions as well as geographic reach beyond Northern Virginia and Maryland in the coming years.
ECSC, currently in its second year of play, is the first travel soccer organization exclusive to Ellicott City. It started off with 26 teams and 350 youth academy players in its first year, all made up of organic growth with local players choosing to play for their new hometown club.
ECSC’s technical staff is led by Executive Director Tim Ryerson, Technical Director Carmen Juliano, University of Maryland women’s coach and ECSC Director of Player Development Kevin Dempsey, and former Hammond High School, North Carolina State and US Youth National Team member Wade Whitney, who serves as the ECSC Foundations Director for developmental clinics ages 3-12.
The ECSC leadership has instilled a club-centric approach, with a coaching staff and organizational structure compatible with the CCL’s requirements. Ryerson, a longtime player and coach in the area who won a Maryland State Championship while playing for Oakland Mills High School in Howard County, started ECSC with a mission to have a club where ‘Soccer people make soccer decisions for the good of each participant.’
“Looking at the soccer landscape and how things are changing, we really became interested in being more club-centric instead of team-centric, and joining CCL II aligned with our commitment and what we’re already doing at our club,” Ryerson said.
“The level of play and the tenure that the clubs have in this league is also a draw,” Ryerson continued. “These are clubs that I remember growing up playing against, which speaks to the quality of the league.”
As part of the application process, ECSC’s six incoming CCL II sides and coaching staff visited FC Frederick for a series of friendlies on Saturday, June 6. FC Frederick Executive Director and CCL Executive Committee member Bo Eskay said it was readily apparent ECSC would be a good fit for the league.
“We’ve gotten to know the Ellicott City coaching staff well and have been very impressed,” Eskay said. “The CCL has a fairly rigorous application process which requires everyone to function as a club, and for all the teams to be well-organized. We couldn’t be more excited to have Ellicott City because they are clearly dedicated to a true club model where kids can really develop and flourish.”
Along with the match day at FC Frederick, CCL Executive Director Brian Kuk and Executive Committee members executed a home site visit to Ellicott City SC on May 9 that included facility review, meeting key staff and board members, as well as evaluating all age groups.
The inaugural CCL II season kicks off on Saturday, August 29.