WSA General meeting

Thursday 5/1/2008


Board members present: Jim Fitzgerald, Dan White, Joe Tringale, Kevin Horrigan, Mike Boudreau, Steve Degaravilla, John Bosco and Steve Nixon.


Others present: Anthony Desimone, Dave Chapman, Pam Veerman, Thomas Hartrey, Ellen Hartrey, Paul Melanson, Steve Adragna.


Jim Fitzgerald read the minutes from the April Meeting.  Corrections were made to the board members that were actually present at that meeting, and the minutes were approved.


Mike Boudreau discussed the availability of patches for those Coaches whose teams were participating in tournaments.


Dan White stated that the website had been updated with links to “Sports Manager”.


Jim Fitzgerald commented that Sports Manager was working well, and that Steve Logan, Steve Degaravilla, John Bosco and Dan White deserved recognition for all their work in the transition.


Steve Degaravilla mentioned that there were open Board positions in Middlesex Youth soccer, and that travel rosters would be frozen as of May 6.  He also stated that each participating city or town would be allowed to vote at the Annual general Meeting, with each team receiving a number of votes corresponding with the number of teams/players in the league.  Jim Fitzgerald will be delegating the Wakefield votes to 5 people.


Jim Fitzgerald spoke for Steve Logan regarding the need for individuals interested in coaching travel teams next year to submit their names to Steve.  Jim also spoke of the need for evaluators at the tryouts, and discussed the need for parents to man the registration table during tryouts.  The A coaches within each division should take the lead to coordinate the tryout procedure.  A meeting prior to tryouts would be held to change the evaluation forms.


Jim Fitzgerald then discussed the Board meeting that was held the previous week to discuss the field availability issue and number of travel teams.  Only Walton and Beasley are permitted for soccer, and the soccer program shares those fields with the youth lacrosse program.  For the remainder of this year, he requested that the U-14 teams not start practices at Walton any earlier than 7:00 PM.  He also thanked coaches for their understanding that games had first priority.


Jim also stated that the intention was to reduce the number of travel teams for next season.  Going forward, there would be 8 U-10 teams, 6 U-12 teams, 4 U-14 teams, 2 U-16 teams, and 2 U-18 teams.  This would be a reduction of 2 teams from this year’s total  of 8 U-10 teams, 7 U-12 teams, 6 U-14 teams, 1 U-16 teams, and 2 U-18 teams.  The most significant impact would likely be on the girls side at the U-12 and U-14 levels.


After discussion of the reduction in team number, several coaches asked whether “commitment” would now be considered into the evaluation process, as well as how parents would be notified of the proposed changes to the number of travel teams and tryout process.  Jim Fitzgerald volunteered to write a letter which would likely be distributed via e-mail, and published in the newspaper.


Steve Logan joined the meeting.


Further discussion about the Recreation Commission and the permitting of fields ensued.  Steve Adragna mentioned that he had spoken to the AD at the Northeast Regional, and that they had no fields available, and that Saugus and Lynnfield were experiencing similar constraints.  Pam Veerman mentioned that visiting teams were finding the multiple lines at Walton Field to be confusing.


Dave Chapman asked when “A’ coaches for next year would be assigned.  Jim responded that interested parties should submit their name to Steve Logan, and he would assign those spots.


Jim mentioned that the referee assignor position would be vacant next in the coming year, and that as this position requires training, we would likely hire someone from outside the league to fill that position.


The general meeting was adjourned and the Board meeting commenced at approximately 9:45.


The first issue discussed by the Board was related to the registration process and what the age cutoff should be.  Discussion centered around whether a player had to be enrolled in Kindergarten in the Wakefield Public Schools, or be old enough to enroll in Kindergarten in the Wakefield Public Schools.  The need for birth certificates at registration was also discussed, and was tied to the participation in the travel program.  The existing structure of the Intramural program, by grades, as opposed to age, was also discussed.  A motion was made to allow children who would be enrolled in a Kindergarten program in 2008-9 or be 5 years old as of September 1, 2008 to register, and was passed by the Board.


The next issue discussed was regarding the MLS camp held in August, and the request for the Wakefield Soccer Association (WSA)  to proved a deposit for the camp, and pay for a field permit for the camp.  Much discussion as to the actual process of registering for the camp, whether WSA was at risk of losing money and wheyethr WSA should be in the position of supporting any camps.  Discussion was tabled pending Joe Tringale obtaining and reviewing the details of the arrangement.


A Board meeting devoted to the Bylaws will be held prior to the June Annual Meeting.


Much discussion ensued about the registration numbers, which appear to be lower than last year, and whether WSA needs to have another walk in session.  The decision was made to wait until after the May 9 early bird cut off date , and reevaluate the situation at that time.