Each year, Special Olympics New Jersey strives to provide high quality opportunities for over 25,000 athletes throughout the Garden State who compete in any number of the 260 events, free of charge. It is through the amazing efforts of our Partners like the Players Development Academy, its participants and their families, who support the annual fundraising marathon, that allow us as an organization to maintain the high standards we have come accustomed to.
We look forward to this continued partnership with the coaches, administrators, athletes and their families of the Players Development Academy. Each person matters in the Special Olympics Movement and I hope that you will consider becoming a volunteer or a cheering spectator at one of our many events in the near future. If you have already volunteered and have been a fan in the stands, thank you and we hope to see you again!
PDA's Tobin Heath named 2016 US Soccer Player of the Year
Congrats Tobin !!!!!!!!!!
“It’s obviously an honor to win an award like this, especially when you look at the list of amazing players who have won it before,” Heath said. “This year was a difficult one for our team, but overall we played some great soccer so it’s humbling to be recognized individually. I’m just proud to be in the company of all the great players that were nominated and all of the players that played for the USA this year. I couldn’t have accomplished anything without the support of my teammates and my coaches, and while it was a fun year for me personally, I’m excited not only about my own future, but also the future of this team as I know we have a lot more room to grow and many more goals to achieve.”
This year saw the 28-year-old Basking Ridge, N.J. native elevate her game to an even higher level. Heath played in 22 games, scoring six goals while recording eight assists tying for second-most on the team with Dunn. Both numbers were career bests for Heath, who this year competed in her fifth world championship for the USA. She played 1,747 minutes in 2016, good for second-best on the team.
Heath was one of the USA’s best players at the 2016 Olympic Games where she recorded two assists. In her fourth season playing for the NWSL’s Portland Thorns FC, Heath finished the year with 10 assists – a new league record – in only 14 appearances for the club – while helping PTFC to the regular season title. She was named to the NWSL Best XI.
PDA Shore Teams To Start Playing Games at OCC on October 16th
PDA is excited to announce their partnership with Ocean County College in Toms River, New Jersey. This will be the new home for our PDA Shore Girls and Boys program. PDA was approached with several opportunities looking to partner with our PDA Shore program as it continues to grow. “We are extremely fortunate to have this opportunity and look forward to working together with Ocean County College for many years to come”, said Mike O’Neill, Director of Coaching for PDA girls program.
Gerald McKweon, Director of PDA Boys also added, “It’s a great opportunity for our PDA Shore program to expand our vision of continued growth and development through youth soccer”! This Sunday, October 16th, please join us as both programs (boys/girls) open up on their new turf field at Ocean County College Campus. PDA 2003 Ozil boys kickoff at 2:30pm, while the 2003 PDA Freedom girls follow
The Players Development Acadamy is pleased to announce the launch of the PDA Girls Bergen County Training and Identification Center. This program is the result of a cooperative effort between PDA and the Torpedoes SC. PDA has set the standard for female soccer players over the past 10 years, developing many youth and full national team members and we are excited to bring our training method to a new area. The Bergen county training and ID program is designed to identify and develop the best female players in Bergen County and the surrounding area. Don't miss this exciting opportunity to work with excellent coaches and players. Space is limited so register quickly!
PDA South girls U13, U14, and U15’s are going to NPL Nationals in Aurora Colorado, July 14th-18th.
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The PDA South girls teams competed in the Northeast Division Playoffs June 18th/19th with the winners getting a bid to the NPL Nationals. All PDA South teams from U13-U18 made the playoffs with the U17’s and U18’s making the final and the U16’s making the semi finals. The PDA South U13-U15’s won the competition.
Congrats to all teams for putting in a great effort this season! Best wishes in Aurora Colorado.
On behalf of the entire PDA organization,Patty Seitz and the PDA Galaxy were thrilled to present a check for $98,000 to Diane Paraskevas,Senior Director of Corporate Development for NJ Special Olympics.
The PDA ran their annual 24 hour Marathon in January 2016.
PDA U18 Academy Players Sign Off on College Commitments for Fall 2016
CHICAGO (Feb. 9, 2016) – National Signing Day took place on Wednesday, Feb. 3, with multiple U.S. Soccer Development Academy players announcing their college commitments starting this fall.
Of the clubs that submitted college commitments, Players Development Academy led the group with 17 players heading to the collegiate level.
Players Development Academy: Matthew Mais (Bucknell), Austin Riddick (Georgetown), Joseph Bianco (LaSalle Univ.), Michael Colao (Loyola (MD)), Shane Kastl (Loyola (MD)), Ernest Mitchell (Marist), Michael Luke (Monmouth), Schuyler Fuchsman (Northeastern), Jack Casey (Notre Dame), Thomas McCabe (Notre Dame), Athanaios Scheidt (Rutgers Univ.), Chaz Burnett (Rutgers Univ.), Cameron Allen (Siena College), Kevin Silva (UCLA), Joshua Goldstern (Univ. of Virginia), Andres Camacho (Villanova), Isaiah Young (Wake Forest)
Players Development Academy - US Soccer Age Group Changes Guidelines
Players Development Academy
US Soccer Age Group Change Guidelines
As was previously communicated, US Soccer will be making changes regarding youth soccer birth year US Soccer, our national governing body, is mandating that beginning 2017, players will play their own birth year as opposed to the current Augusts 1st to July 31st (Traditional school year). In an attempt to be proactive, our local, state and regional league associations will implement these changes for the fall of 2016.
As always at the PDA, our desire is to balance being leaders in our industry with the best interest of player development at the forefront of our decision making. In order to provide our players with the most effective environment to develop and compete, we will align with US Soccer's age group mandate by offering birth year teams and programs starting in the fall of 2016. Tryouts for 2016/17 teams will be held in the spring and will be advertised by birth as well as the new age group distinction.
We have performed our due diligence through research, attending meetings, engaging in discussions with league leaders and other top clubs across the country, and the general consensus amongst them is to embrace the upcoming changes this year. We pride ourselves in providing the best coaching staff, facilities, programs, and training.
There will inevitably be exceptions to the following club decisions but they will be made with the best interests of our players in mind
·All current players born during the calendar years of 1998 - 2010 will tryout and play for their birth year. Exceptions may be made based on team make up, age and development opportunities. Any decisions on player movement will be evaluated and approved by club staff and Director of coaching,
·New players wishing to join the PDA born during the calendar years of 1998 - 2010 will tryout and play for their birth year. Again, exceptions may be made based on team make up, age and development opportunities. Any decisions on player movement will be evaluated and approved by club staff and Director of coaching,
During the winter, we will host team meetings to further explain how these changes will impact the players. These changes are also new to us as a club and while we have made this decision, there are still many nuances and organizational roll out decisions to be made. Therefore, we respectfully ask that you refrain from sending questions to the coaches or staff until after your team meeting takes place. We are also looking into the possibility of offering some birth year age group training sessions periodically during the spring season, however we don’t want these sessions or the age group changes to take away from the players development until August 1st, their priority still remains their current team and they should be fully committed and engaged until the changes come into effect.
The table below shows the age breakdown and new relabeling of the "U" format from US Soccer that all clubs will comply with starting in June 2016.
Age Group for 2016/17
We thank you for your continued support of The PDA Soccer Club and look forward to a great winter training and spring season.